Blue Jays Defeat Knights

Borgia catcher Justin Baylard tags Washington runner Camron Shipley out at the plate during the Four Rivers Classic semifinals at Borgia. The Blue Jays defeated the Knights in the game, 6-0, but lost to Festus in the championship game, 7-6.    

Aaron Meyer has yet to surrender a run in two pitching starts so far this season for the Washington baseball squad.

After blanking Hermann through four innings in the opening round of the Four Rivers Classic, Meyer was back at it again in the semifinals of the championship bracket, keeping Borgia off the scoreboard in 5.1 innings of work.

Meyer and the Blue Jays went on for a 6-0 victory over the Knights Saturday at Borgia.

“It’s the second start in a row where Aaron has done a great job,” said Washington Head Coach Scott Bray. “He really thinks when he’s pitching and he throws the ball well. He changes speeds well and hits his spots. He has a lot of fun doing it. He’s pretty talented.”

Meyer allowed no runs on two hits with three walks and six strikeouts.

“We did nothing offensively worth discussing,” Borgia Head Coach Rob Struckhoff said. “Meyer did a good job keeping the ball down and throwing strikes.”

Scott Byrne registered the final two outs for the Blue Jays, allowing one walk.

“Washington deserves the credit for being more mentally tough than we were,” Struckhoff said.

Tyler Murray got the start on the mound for Borgia and suffered the loss. In 4.1 innings, he allowed six runs, three earned, on five hits with five walks and one strikeout.

Jacob Grellner worked the final 1.2 frames, allowing no runs on one hit with one walk and two strikeouts.

“Tyler Murray started for us and I thought he had good stuff,” Struckhoff said. “However, he struggled with the strike zone and his defense didn’t help him at all. He’ll have better outings for us. Jacob Grellner came in for relief and did a good job keeping us in it.”

The victory sent the Blue Jays to the tournament’s championship game, where they lost 7-6 to Festus.

Borgia lost to Pacific in the third-place contest, 10-1.

“It’s a big game against Borgia for the kids because they all know each other. They play with each other and against each other,” Bray said. “The kids do a better job knowing the scouting report than I do when we play them.”

Washington held the lead from start to finish, scoring two runs in both the first and third inning and single tallies in the fourth and fifth.

The game ended after six innings due to the time limit of one hour and 45 minutes.

“Jumping out to a lead was important. It helped settle everyone down,” Bray said. “We still made too many errors. There are areas where we need to improve.”

Matt McGilvray collected two of Washington’s six hits. He also scored two runs.

Camron Shipley, Matt Miller, Nick Thiel and Meyer each finished with one hit. Meyer also walked twice. Shipley walked and had one RBI. Miller walked and scored.

Ryan Becszlko, Austin Finder and Byrne each scored a run. Sam Katzung walked and had one RBI. Byrne added one RBI. Brian Trigg also drew a walk.

“We put the ball in play. At times, we’re missing our pitch and we’re not hitting it as hard as we could be,” Bray said. “We came out swinging. When you get in hitters’ counts, you have to go up there swinging it. When you get two strikes in the count, you still got to battle it out, put it in play and get on base. That’s what we did against Borgia. We put the ball in play and they made some mistakes.”

Nathaniel Hillermann and Justin Horace both had one hit for Borgia.

Hillermann’s hit was a line drive off the glove of Thiel at first. Initially, the ball was ruled foul by the plate umpire, but the field umpire overruled the call and awarded a single. Courtesy runner Todd Kleekamp was given second base on the play.

Spencer Juergens drew two walks. John Himmelberg and Justin Baylard also walked.

“I was really disappointed in the way we played against Washington,” Struckhoff said. “We could blame it on playing at Duchesne the night before, the early morning, or the cold, but we don’t make excuses. When you are in a rivalry game, it shouldn’t be hard to be motivated. Both teams made mistakes, but Washington tightened up their defense first and was able to capitalize on ours. We walked too many, threw wild pitches, and made five errors on defense (four in one inning). It was a very forgettable game for us.”