A quick glimpse at the record states that the Washington Post 218 Senior Legion team survived the weekend undefeated.
But that is far from the full story.
Post 218 improved to 4-0 overall, 3-0 in the Ninth District, with two close wins over St. Peters Friday, 4-1, and West Sunday, 6-5.
Post 218 returns to Ninth District action Tuesday against Central at C&H Park. First pitch is set for 8:30 p.m.
Post 218 hosts St. Charles Wednesday at 8:30 p.m.
On Thursday, Washington plays at Wentzville starting at 8 p.m.
Daniel Boone visits Washington Friday at 7 p.m. On Saturday, Washington hosts Clarksville at 6:30 p.m.
Washington hosts Creve Couer Sunday in a 6 p.m. nonleague game.
On Sunday, Washington added to its storied rivalry with West, coming from three runs behind in the ninth inning to win the game in 10 innings, 6-5.
“I think it’s safe to say that the rivalry with West is alive and well,” said Post 218 Manager Mike Gardner.
The two teams have clashed in many big games during recent seasons (most recently last year’s Zone 1 Tournament title series) and Sunday’s game showed that rivalry remains alive and well for 2012.
“It’s the kind of game that will give us confidence against whoever we are playing the rest of the season,” Gardner said. “We also know that we have the ability to come back and win a game in the late innings.”
Washington scored first in the game. Grant Eckelkamp led off with a triple and scored on a sacrifice fly by Mike McGilvray.
But, from there, West set the tone for much of the rest of the game.
West tied it in the fourth and then took the lead with two runs in the fifth.
Washington got one run back in the sixth to make it 3-2, but West scored single runs in the eighth and ninth innings to take a 5-2 lead.
“West came up with a run in the top of the ninth to go up 5-2, and I was a little concerned with our attitude as we came off of the field,” Gardner said. “
Post 218, which had been thwarted in rallies during previous innings, came through to tie the game.
Dilan Bollmann started the rally with a triple. Eckelkamp singled him home. After Sam Deschenes was hit by a pitch, Trent Leimkuehler delivered an RBI single. Matt Jones then was walked to load the bases.
McGilvray delivered a sacrifice fly to plate Deschenes with the tying run.
“I thought we won the game on the next pitch as Noah Borgerding hit a hard line drive but it carried all the way out to the center fielder,” Gardner said.
That only delayed the outcome. In the 10th inning, Post 218 came through to win it with a run.
Dustin Howard walked, took second on a wild pitch and then scored when West threw the ball past the first baseman following a bunt by Jack Kopmann.
Brendan Kleekamp got the start for Washington after demonstrating the ability to defeat West during last year’s Zone Tournament. He went five innings, allowing three runs (one earned) on seven hits and two walks. Kleekamp struck out six.
“Brendan Kleekamp started for us on the mound and pitched through some poor defense on our part,” Gardner said. “It will not show up in the box score but he really battled and kept us in the game.”
Jones, who started the game as the designated hitter, took over and earned the win. He allowed two runs on three hits and one walk over five innings. Jones struck out two batters.
Post 218 threatened several times, but West seemed to match every surge with a key play.
“We again had some chances early in the game and had runners on base in most innings but really just could not come up with a key hit in the first part of the game,” Gardner said. “Fortunately for us we did not give up and kept battling. A big reason why we had a chance to come back was the pitching performance that Matt Jones gave us in relief. We again managed to come up big in the later innings of the game which seems to be a positive trend for our team.”
Offensively, Leimkuehler led the way with four hits and one RBI.
Eckelkamp and McGilvray each had two hits. Deschenes, Borgerding, Kopmann and Bollmann each had one hit.
Eckelkamp and Deschenes scored two runs each. Howard and Bollmann each scored once.
McGilvray drove in two runs while Eckelkamp, Deschenes and Leimkuehler each had one RBI.
Jones walked twice and Howard drew one walk.
Eckelkamp and Bollmann tripled in the game.
McGilvray had two sacrifices and Deschenes added one.
Washington won over St. Peters Friday night at home, 4-1.
Both teams had trouble getting things going. Washington scored all four of its runs in the bottom of the eighth inning. St. Peters then scored in the top of the ninth.
Tony Helfrich pitched a complete game victory for Washington. Over nine innings, he allowed one run on two hits and two walks while striking out 10 St. Peters batters.
“The highlight of this game was the outstanding pitching performance by Tony Helfrich,” Gardner said. “He was dominant on the mound going all nine innings striking out 10 batters and only giving up two hits. It also was by far the best game we have played defensively.”
Offensively, Post 218 was held to eight hits in the game.
Kopmann led Washington with three hits and added a run.
Deschenes recorded two hits while scoring a run.
Bollmann, Jones and Leimkuehler each had one hit in the game.
Eckelkamp scored the other run. Bollmann and Jones had RBIs. Leimkuehler doubled.
Eckelkamp, Bollmann, Jones, Leimkuehler and Luke Hasenjaeger walked. Hasenjaeger also sacrificed.
“We had some good at-bats early in the game and had some opportunities but we just could not get the timely hit we needed to get on the scoreboard,” Gardner said. “We finally were able to score in the bottom of the eighth inning and break the game open.”
Bollmann opened up the scoring with a two-run single.
“The big hit was by Dilan Bollmann who was able to single up the middle to drive in the first two runs,” Gardner said. “Jack Kopmann and Sam Deschenes both really had good games at the plate.”