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Pitching Propels Baseball Knights to Pool Crown

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Posted: Wednesday, March 27, 2013 10:00 am

Barnstroming baseball is back.

The Borgia Knights played their two pool games in the Four Rivers Classic Friday at two different locations and picked up two wins.

The Knights had been scheduled to play those games earlier in the week, but wet field conditions forced those games to be moved.

So, Borgia played Owensville Friday at the Borgia High School Field and earned a 7-1 victory.

The Knights then got up and drove over to Dutzow, where they took on Montgomery County in the other Pool A contest and came away with a 10-0 win on a no-hitter by senior Tony Helfrich.

“We had been worried about playing in two different places,” said Borgia Head Coach Rob Struckhoff. “We didn’t practice Thursday because we had to prepare our field since we couldn’t get the city park. After that, we drove to Dutzow and had to wait because the Washington freshmen were playing. It got colder. Montgomery County beat us there and they were out in the cold longer.”

The wins put Borgia into the winners’ bracket of the tournament Saturday in Pacific.

“We played until 9 p.m. Friday night and then had to get back on the bus for the early game at Pacific Saturday,” Struckhoff said.

The Saturday games can be found in separate stories in this section.


After watching other schools begin their seasons, the Knights finally got to play their opener Friday at their school field.

The Knights jumped out to the lead with a run in the third inning. Borgia scored again in the fourth and added four big runs in the bottom of the fifth.

After Borgia scored once in the sixth, Owensville added a run in the top of the seventh to break up the shutout.

Borgia got a complete game from sophomore Spencer Juergens.

“Juergens was outstanding,” Struckhoff said. “He throws pretty hard for a sophomore. He only allowed two hits and two walks while striking out eight. He threw only 55 pitches through the first six innings.”

The lone Owensville run was earned.

“I was very happy with his first varsity start,” Struckhoff said.

Struckhoff said it was a good thing to see the young players come through in the game.

“Coach (Spencer) Unnerstall and I didn’t know what we had this year,” Struckhoff said. “We’ve got a lot of new players without varsity experience. We had a lot of veterans last year. The young guys stepped up and did a good job. They were impressive.”

Borgia got two hits each from Helfrich, Justin Horace, Noah Borgerding, Nathaniel Hillermann and Matt Jones.

Helfrich doubled, scored a run and drove in one.

Horace doubled, scored twice and drove in a run.

Borgerding doubled, scored twice, walked and stole two bases.

Hillermann drove in two.

Jones doubled, walked and drove in two runs.

“We had eight hits from our top four hitters in the order,” Struckhoff said. “That made a huge difference. We knew we had good hitters coming back at the top of the order. The bottom of the order made the difference later in the tournament.”

Other hits came from Nick Jacquin and Michael Kren.

Todd Kleekamp scored two runs.

“Owensville’s pitcher (Alex Moritz) did a good job,” Struckhoff said. “This was our first time out and there were some nerves. When we scored four runs in the fifth inning, that broke it open.”

Montgomery County

From there, the Knights hustled over to Dutzow for their second game. Borgia was supposed to play the Wildcats on Tuesday in Montgomery City, but that game was washed out.

Montgomery County had knocked the Knights out of contention for the winners’ bracket last year, something Struckhoff reminded the team about prior to the game.

“Montgomery County has a good team,” Struckhoff said. “We had a little talk about last year. We got a very impressive pitching performance from Tony.”

Helfrich went the distance, allowing only two walks while striking out 10 Wildcats.

“He was painting the corners from the start,” Struckhoff said. “He showed great control. He was throwing hard and it was difficult to hit that with the temperature in the upper 30s. He walked two of the first five batters he faced, but he settled down after that. His 10 strikeouts included the last five batters of the game.”

Offensively, the Knights scored five times in the second and five times in the fifth.

Borgerding, Grant Eckelkamp, Hillermann and Kren posted two hits apiece.

Borgerding doubled, scored once and drove in a run.

Eckelkamp scored twice and walked.

Hillermann doubled, scored twice and drove in two runs.

“Nathaniel had a great tournament for us,” Struckhoff said.

Kren scored twice and drove in two.

Jacquin, Horace and Helfrich each had one hit.

Horace doubled, walked and scored a run.

Helfrich helped his own cause by doubling, scoring, walking twice and stealing a base.

“Tony hit a long double which might have been out of the park on another day,” Struckhoff said.

The game ended after five innings on the mercy rule and the win gave Borgia the Pool A title and a berth in the semifinals in St. Clair Saturday morning.


Area Scoreboard

62nd Annual Borgia Pepsi Thanksgiving Tournament

Blue Division

Pool 1

McCluer North



Pool 2

Cardinal Ritter


Rockwood Summit

Gold Division

Pool 1




Pool 2


North Tech


Monday, Nov. 24

CBC 77, Washington 52

Tuesday, Nov. 25

Cardinal Ritter vs. Rockwood Summit, PPD

Washington 63, Soldan 62

Borgia 83, Union 50

Wednesday, Nov. 26

Carnahan 71, Normandy 46

Pacific 64, Rockwood Summit 22

North Tech 67, Union 37

Thursday, Nov. 27

McCluer North 95 Carnahan 68

CBC 82, Soldan 55

Borgia 50, North Tech 45

Friday, Nov. 28

McCluer North 93, Normandy 39

Pacific 70, Cardinal Ritter 57

Saturday, Nov. 29

Blue Consolation — Rockwood Summit 47, Normandy 38

Gold Consolation — Soldan 78, Union 59

Gold Third Place — North Tech 63, Washington 57

Blue Third Place — Cardinal Ritter 71, Carnahan 46

Blue Championship — McCluer North 64, Pacific 58 (OT)

Gold Championship — CBC 67, Borgia 66

Boys Basketball

Monday, Dec. 8

Lutheran S 64, St. Clair 48

Borgia 61, Carnahan 51

Tuesday, Dec. 9

Lafayette 44, Washington 35

Friday, Dec. 12

Potosi 72, St. Clair 45

*Washington 69, Ft. Zumwalt North 65

Montgomery Co 62, New Haven 61

*St. Mary’s at Borgia    6:45 p.m.

Bourbon 75, Union 74

Glendale 63, Pacific 46

Saturday, Dec. 13

New Haven 46, Barat 40

Nixa 56, Pacific 46

Tuesday, Dec. 16

*Pacific 70, New Haven 35

*Hermann 67, St. Clair 49

*Ft. Zumwalt South 61, Washington 50

*Union 81, St. James 74

Friday, Dec. 19

*Owensville at St. Clair    4 p.m.

Washington vs. Parkway Central, GAC/Suburban Shootout, St. Charles Family Arena, 5:30 p.m.

*St. James at New Haven    6 p.m.

*Pacific at Union    7 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 20

Sullivan Shootout

Owensville vs. Rockwood Summit, 11:30 a.m.

St. Clair vs. Lindbergh, 1 p.m.

Jefferson City vs. Jackson, 2:30 p.m.

Washington vs. Lutheran South, 4 p.m.

Borgia vs. Poplar Bluff, 5:30 p.m.

Sullivan vs. Affton, 7 p.m.

Girls Basketball

Saturday, Dec. 6

Cor Jesu 63, Borgia 60

New Haven 46, Moberly 39

Monday, Dec. 8

Pacific 73, Rolla 40

St. Clair 68, Dixon 37

Washington 54, New Haven 15

Tuesday, Dec. 9

*Borgia 59, Rosati-Kain 38

Union 53, Northwest 44

Thursday, Dec. 11

*Borgia 60, Notre Dame 53

Union 81, Bourbon 53

Friday, Dec. 12

New Haven 45, Principia 30

*Washington 59, Ft. Zumwalt North 32

Saturday, Dec. 13

West Plains 76, Pacific 37

Monday, Dec. 15

*Pacific 46, New Haven 28

*St. Clair 59, Hermann 50

*St. James 64, Union 37

Sullivan Tournament

Cuba 48, Principia 27

Borgia 68, Patriettes 29

Sullivan 56, Pattonville 43

Owensville 78, Farmington 54

Wednesday, Dec. 17

Sullivan Tournament

Farmington 61, Pattonville 39

Sullivan 68, Owensville 64

Principia 55, St. Louis Patriettes 42

Borgia 56, Cuba 38

Thursday, Dec. 18

*St. James 72, New Haven 21

*Union 49, Pacific 48

Friday, Dec. 19

Washington at Francis Howell    7 p.m.

Sullivan Tournament

Seventh Place — Pattonville vs. St. Louis Patriettes, 4 p.m.

Consolation — Farmington vs. Principia, 5:30 p.m.

Third Place — Owensville vs. Cuba, 7 p.m.

Championship — Borgia vs. Sullivan, 8:30 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 20

Union at Waynesville    5 p.m.


Monday, Dec. 8

Maplewood 48, Borgia 30

Brentwood 47, Borgia 36

Winfield 48, St. Clair 36

St. Clair 42, St. James 40

Tuesday, Dec. 9

Pacific 55, North County 10

Jackson 63, Washington 12

Farmington 63, Washington 6

Wednesday, Dec. 10

Borgia 36, Lutheran St. Charles 34

Winfield 54, Borgia 30

Thursday, Dec. 11

Union 72, Ft. Zumwalt East 9

Union 52, Principia 30

Union 54, Winfield 27

Saturday, Dec. 13

Union Tournament    9 a.m.

Borgia at McCluer S-Berkeley Tny    9 a.m.

Pacific at Farmington Tny    9 a.m.

Tuesday, Dec. 16

Owensville 61, St. Clair 16

Union 48, Owensville 27

Union 65, St. Clair 18

Friday, Dec. 19

Washington at Raytown S Tny    TBA

Union at Cape Central Tny    TBA

Pacific at Ft. Zumwalt E Tny    TBA

Saturday, Dec. 20

Washington at Raytown S Tny    TBA

Union at Cape Central Tny    TBA

Pacific at Ft. Zumwalt E Tny    TBA

Girls Swimming

Monday, Dec. 8

Washington at Eureka    4:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Dec. 9

Washington at Nerinx Hall    4 p.m.

LSC/OFC 134, Borgia 101, St. Dominic 83

Monday, Dec. 15

Borgia at Notre Dame (Forest Park)    4 p.m.

Kennedy 88, Washington 84

Wednesday, Dec. 17

Lindbergh 128, Washington 48

*Conference Games