With wins over St. Peters and West, the Washington Post 218 Seniors remained unbeaten in the Ninth District standings.
Washington (22-3, 14-0) won Friday at Ronsick Field over St. Peters 12-2 in seven innings and claimed a 5-3 decision over West Saturday at Westhoff Park in O’Fallon.
Sunday’s game at Elsberry was postponed due to rain. It will be made up when the two teams meet at the Blue Springs Tournament July 12.
Washington has all but secured the Ninth District regular season crown. Post 218 has league games remaining against Wentzville, Warrenton, St. Charles and Elsberry.
West is 11-3 in the district standings. St. Charles is 9-4.
If all nine district teams compete in the Ninth District Tournament July 18-21, there will be two brackets consisting of North and South Division squads. The two winners will advance to the Zone Tournament.
If only eight teams compete, there will be just one bracket. The tournament winner and the regular season champion will advance to the Zone Tournament.
Post 218 played Tuesday at Wentzville and has games Wednesday at Ronsick Field against Warrenton at 6 p.m. and St. Charles at 8:30 p.m.
Washington plays Saturday at Ste. Genevieve against New Baden, Ill., at 2:30 p.m. and Murphysboro, Ill., at 5 p.m.
On Sunday, Post 218 travels to Festus to play Festus at noon and Jackson at 3 p.m.
Washington fell behind briefly against St. Peters, but quickly took control for the seven-inning victory, 12-2.
After St. Peters took a 2-0 lead with two runs in the top of the third inning, Post 218 responded with six runs in the bottom of the third to grab the advantage for good.
Washington added a run in the bottom of the sixth inning and ended the game with five runs in the bottom of the seventh.
Justin Schuler pitched all seven innings for Post 218 to earn the win. He allowed two runs on five hits with three walks and 10 strikeouts.
“Justin was really dominant from the third inning on,” said Post 218 Manager Mike Gardner. “The strike zone was kind of tight and Justin did a really good job of not letting it affect the way he pitched.”
Washington collected nine hits by seven different players.
Matt Jones reached base three times with two hits and one walk to go with two runs and one RBI.
Ben Huffman added two hits and one run.
Grant Eckelkamp was on base four times with one hit, two walks and was hit by a pitch to go with two RBIs and one run.
Dilan Bollmann had one hit, one walk, one RBI and one run.
Noah Borgerding registered one hit, two RBIs and two runs.
Luke Hasenjaeger collected one hit, was hit by a pitch, scored two runs and had one RBI.
Trent Leimkuehler had one hit (double) and one RBI.
Jack Kopmann walked three times, scored two runs and had one RBI. Zach Pointer had one walk, one RBI and one run.
“We were again very patient at the plate and were able to take advantage of several walks that allowed us to end the game early,” Gardner said. “We again had production up and down the lineup. Noah Borgerding almost hit one out to dead center and Trent Leimkuehler hit a shot to left center with the bases loaded that ended the game.”
Washington and West renewed their rivalry Saturday night at Westhoff Park with Post 218 claiming a 5-3 victory.
“West really came out and played a great game. They were aggressive at the plate and on the bases,” Gardner said. “We responded by making some great plays, getting some timely hitting and really gutsy pitching. Although we made a few errors, they were on tough plays.
“We made a few of great defensive plays. Luke (Hasenjaeger) threw a runner out at the plate early in the game and made a nice sliding catch in the eighth to help slow down a rally. Noah Borgerding made the best play of the year so far. In the eighth with two outs, he climbed the fence down the first base side to catch a pop up and end the inning. He jumped up, had one foot on the fence, his hand on the top of the fence, and caught the ball 4 or 5 feet above the fence. It was really an unbelievable play.”
Tyler Tuepker got the start on the mound for Washington and earned the win. In eight innings of work, he allowed three runs, one earned, on eight hits with no walks and three strikeouts.
Leimkuehler pitched a perfect ninth inning to register the save.
“Tyler has been great on the mound all year and I thought that he really showed his heart against West,” Gardner said. “They had a hit in every inning, we made a few errors and the strike zone was a little tight. None of it affected his attitude or tenacity in making quality pitches.”
Austin Verschoore was the starting pitcher for West and suffered the loss. He worked 6.2 innings, allowing five runs on 10 hits with four walks and two strikeouts.
Zac Hofman and Danny Biggs worked in relief.
Washington took a 2-0 lead with a pair of runs in the top of the first inning.
After West made the score 2-1 in the bottom of the first, both teams scored single runs in the fourth inning to make the score 3-2.
Post 218 scored single runs in the top of the sixth and seventh frames to increase its lead to 5-2. West scored a run in the bottom of the eighth.
Hasenjaeger, Jones and Kopmann led Washington’s 10-hit attack with two hits apiece.
Kopmann also walked and had one RBI. Hasenjaeger and Jones both added one RBI.
Borgerding finished with one hit, two walks and two runs.
Bollmann collected one hit and two runs. Leimkuehler had a hit and scored a run. Eckelkamp added one hit. Sam Katzung had one RBI.