By Craig Vonder Haar
Missourian Sports Writer
With their bats coming alive, the Washington Post 218 Seniors remained unbeaten in Ninth District action Wednesday against Wentzville.
Post 218 (10-1, 9-0) connected for 16 hits in a seven-inning victory over Wentzville at Ronsick Field, 15-5.
Washington jumped to a 11-0 advantage after six innings with four runs in the bottom of the first inning, two in the third, four in the fourth and one in the sixth.
Wentzville (2-7, 1-6) made the score 11-5 with five runs in the top of the seventh inning.
Post 218 ended the game due to the 10-run mercy rule with four runs in the bottom of the seventh inning.
“After giving up the runs in the top of the seventh, I thought it showed the character of our team by coming back in the bottom of the seventh to score four runs and end the game on the 10-run rule,” said Post 218 Manager Mike Gardner. “It was, by far, the best hitting performance by our team this year. Hopefully we can keep swinging the bats like that for the rest of the year.” Cody Gardner tossed six shutout innings to earn the win for Washington. He allowed three hits while walking one and striking out three.
“Cody breezed through six innings of shutout baseball, only throwing 65 pitches,” Gardner said. “We took him out only because we would like him to be available for an inning or two in the four games we have this weekend and it was an opportunity to get Andrew Sumner on the mound.”
Andrew Sumner pitched the seventh inning. He allowed five runs, four earned, on four hits with no walks or strikeouts.
“Andrew threw fine, but was a little unlucky on a bloop infield single and a bad bounce on a double play ball,” Gardner said.
Paul Semore pitched all seven innings for Wentzville. He walked four batters and registered five strikeouts.
Leading Washington’s 16-hit attack was Trent Leimkuehler, who finished the game with four hits, three runs and two RBIs.
Leimkuehler’s two-run double with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning ended the game.
Grant Eckelkamp, Mike McGilvray, Dustin Howard and Brendan Kleekamp (one double) each added two hits.
McGilvray also drew a walk, scored three runs and had one RBI.
Eckelkamp scored two runs. Howard and Kleekamp both added two RBIs.
Jack Kopmann (double), Matt Jones (double), Noah Borgerding and Brendan Feldmann each collected one hit.
Jones also drew a walk, had four RBIs and scored a run.
Kopmann also walked, scored four runs and had one RBI.
Borgerding added one RBI and one run. Feldmann had one RBI. Luke Hasenjaeger walked and scored.
“We banged out 16 hits and it allowed us to get several kids in the game,” Gardner said. “Probably the best hit of the game was Matt Jones’ two-out double that cleared the bases. He might be fighting it a little at the plate, but he really produces with runners on base and it shows with his team-leading 14 RBIs.”
Gardner said the Post 218 players had solid at-bats throughout the contest.
“On our day off, we really worked on getting our sacrifice bunts down and our approach at the plate with runners in scoring position,” Gardner said. “Based on the results of the game, I feel that our kids really responded well to what we worked on in practice.”
Post 218 travels to Elsberry Saturday for games against Elsberry at 1 p.m. and Manchester at 4 p.m. The Seniors travel to Festus Sunday for a games against defending state champion Festus at 1 p.m. and Jackson at 4 p.m.