Down to their final two outs in the losers’ bracket final of the Ninth District Tournament against Daniel Boone, the Washington Post 218 Seniors rallied for five runs in the top of the ninth inning to win the game.
But there was nothing left for Post 218 in the championship contest against West.
Top-seeded Washington (33-8) trailed eighth-seeded Daniel Boone 2-1 heading into the top of the ninth inning, but its five-run rally produced a 6-2 victory Sunday at Westhoff Park in O’Fallon.
“After a tough 10-inning loss (Saturday), the game against Daniel Boone was one of those games where we really did not look like we wanted to be there,” said Post 218 Manager Mike Gardner. “It’s really hard to get the kids motivated when you know you are already moving on to zone.”
Post 218 then lost to second-seeded West 7-1 in the championship game Sunday at Westhoff Park. West also beat Washington Saturday night in the winners’ bracket final.
Had Post 218 defeated West on Sunday, a second championship game would not have been played on Monday. The two teams already were assured a spot in the zone tournament and would have shared the district tournament championship.
But West (30-12) was not in the mood to share, controlling the championship game against Post 218.
“This was a game that I wish we would have never played,” Gardner said. “The game really did not mean anything. Both teams were moving on to the zone tournament and the game did not affect the zone seeding.”
Washington and West will meet again in the Zone 1 Tournament Thursday in Moberly at 8 p.m.
“Just like it was last year, our zone tournament is going to be tough,” Gardner said. “I believe that our experience last year will give our team an edge in knowing what it takes to win this kind of tournament.”
It was better late, than never, for Post 218 against Daniel Boone in a 6-2 victory.
Washington took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning on a double by Noah Borgerding and an RBI single by Tony Helfrich, but didn’t score again until the ninth.
Daniel Boone grabbed a 2-1 advantage with single runs in the bottom of the fourth and fifth innings.
With one out and nobody on base in the top of the ninth inning, Borgerding walked and Sam Katzung singled to get things going.
Grant Eckelkamp then stroked an RBI double down the left-field line to tie the game, 2-2.
Daniel Boone then gave Dilan Bollmann an intentional walk, which loaded the bases for Trent Leimkuehler, who cleared them with a three-run triple to give Washington a 5-2 advantage.
Leimkuehler then scored on a sacrifice fly by Luke Hasenjaeger.
“The key in the ninth was the way that Grant battled in his at-bat and was able to drive a double to the left-field fence that tied the game,” Gardner said. “Then after they walked the bases loaded in an attempt to get a double play, Trent provided the game-winning triple, clearing the bases.”
Matt Jones pitched the final three innings in relief to earn the win. He allowed no runs on four hits with one walk and one strikeout.
Zach Pointer got the start on the mound. In six innings, he allowed two runs, one earned, on six hits with three walks and four strikeouts.
“Zach gave us a great pitching performance that kept us in the game and allowed us to battle back in the ninth inning,” Gardner said. “Matt again came in and gave us three solid innings of relief to pick up the win.”
Eckelkamp and Jack Kopmann both collected three hits for Post 218. Eckelkamp added one RBI and one run. Kopmann also drew a walk.
Leimkuehler finished with two hits, three RBIs and one run.
Ben Huffman, Helfrich, Borgerding and Katzung each had one hit. Borgerding also walked and scored twice. Helfrich added one RBI. Katzung scored a run. Huffman also walked.
Bollmann walked twice and scored a run. Hasenjaeger had one RBI.
Daniel Boone’s Ryan Meyer allowed one run in 6.2 innings. Alex Schoenherr worked the final 2.1 innings and took the loss.
West broke a scoreless tie with four runs in the bottom of the fourth inning and never looked back in a 7-1 win over Post 218 in the championship game of the district tournament.
“We didn’t play with much enthusiasm and West played and acted like it was the seventh game of the World Series,” Gardner said. “We will move on, work hard in practice, be prepared and be fully committed for our game against them in the zone tournament on Thursday.”
Post 218 scored its lone run in the top of the sixth inning to make the score 4-1.
West added two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning and one in the eighth.
Tyler Tuepker got the start on the mound for Post 218 and suffered his first loss of the season. In four innings, Tuepker allowed four runs, two earned, on seven hits with one walk and one strikeout.
Tuepker was on a pitch count because he’s expected to be Washington’s starter again Thursday at the zone tournament.
Tyler Murray worked four innings in relief. He allowed three runs, two earned, on four hits with three walks and no strikeouts.
Peter Wright was West’s starting pitcher and earned the win. In 5.1 innings, he allowed one run on four hits with one walk and two strikeouts.
David Wright (2.2 innings) and Zac Hoffman (one inning) held Post 218 off the scoreboard in relief.
Andrew Sumner and Kopmann both had two hits for Washington. Kopmann scored the lone run.
Leimkuehler, Hasenjaeger, Borgerding and Katzung each finished with one hit. Justin Schuler drew a walk.
Alan Hall and Nick Cessna led West with two hits apiece.