BETHALTO - Nick Williams had two hits and drove home four runs, while Andrew Wieneke struck out nine while on the mound, but the Alton Post 126 senior American Legion baseball team lost a 9-0 lead after the fifth inning and lost to Elsberry, Mo., Post 226 11-10 in the Legionnaires' season opener, played Friday evening at the Bethalto Sports Complex. The original season opener in Elsberry was rained out, pushing Alton's first game to Friday night.

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Things started very well for the Legionnaires, scoring seven runs in the bottom of the second, then plating single runs in the third and fifth to take a 9-0 lead. Elsberry rallied with six runs in the top of the sixth, with Alton scoring once to take a 10-6 lead, then Elsberry scored five more times in the seventh to take the 11-10 win.

The defense betrayed Alton in the game, as the Legionnaires committed six errors.

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To go along with Williams' day at the plate, Hayden Garner and Seth Slayden each had a hit and RBI, Braden Arview, Ian Heflin and Hayden Sherman each had a hit and Nick Rayfield and Logan Bogard also drove in a run each.

Wieneke pitched five-and-two-thirds inning, allowing five runs on three hits, none earned, while walking four and fanning nine. Sherman struck out two and Slayden fanned one while on the mound.

The Legionnaires start the season 0-1 and play at home on Saturday against a team to be determined, then host Piasa Southwestern's summer team Tuesday night at their regular home of Lloyd Hopkins Field in Gordon Moore Park, then play in a tournament June 9-12 at Ballwin, Mo. In west St. Louis County.

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