It took eight innings, but the Borgia baseball Knights were able to triumph Tuesday in St. Louis over St. Mary’s 5-4.
The Knights improved to 6-3 overall and 1-0 in the Archdiocesan Athletic Association Large Division.
It was the first loss for St. Mary’s (2-1).
“This was a great baseball game,” Borgia Head Coach Rob Struckhoff said. “We saw their top two pitchers in (Bryce) Grossius and (Michael) Parks. They are outstanding. Grossius is heading to SEMO and Parks is getting some DI looks. They kept us off-balance most of the game, but we were able to steal some runs early by being aggressive on the bases and putting the ball in play. Our comeback at the end was outstanding. We really took some great at bats late and kept grinding. That is the sign of a special team.”
Borgia opened with two runs in the top of the first, but St. Mary’s tied the game in the bottom of the second and went up 4-2 in the bottom of the third.
The Knights tied it with two runs in the seventh and took the lead for good in the top of the eighth with the final run.
“Joe Schmidt had the big two-out two-RBI double in the seventh to tie the game,” said Struckhoff. “He has been struggling a little at the plate, but we all know what kind of hitter he can be. He also made a great heads-up play at catcher. With two outs in the bottom of the seventh, he threw out the batter at first after strike three in the dirt got past him while the runner from third was coming home for what would’ve been the game winner. There was no way we would have gotten the runner at home.”
Borgia picked up five scoreless relief innings, which helped the Knights earn the win.
Matt Piontek started the game and went three innings, allowing four runs (two earned) on three hits and six walks. He struck out three.
Jack Wooley pitched the next three innings, allowing two hits and one walk while striking out two.
Eli Marquart was the winning pitcher, going two innings while allowing a hit and a walk. He fanned three.
“Jack Wooley did a great job in relief keeping us in the game,” Struckhoff said. “He was able to throw strikes and use his defense. Eli Marquart came in and gave us his best performance of the year in the seventh and eighth to earn the win. What a great confidence booster this should be for him.”
Offensively, Drew Piontek recorded two of the six Borgia hits, including a double.
“Drew Piontek came through with some nice at-bats,” said Struckhoff. “His swing is coming. He also showed great leadership during the game.”
Joe Schmidt also doubled while Marquart, Adam Molitor and Tyler Glosemeyer singled.
Schmidt walked twice while Piontek, Spencer Hunter and Louie Eckelkamp each walked once.
Eckelkamp and Molitor were hit by pitches. Glosemeyer added a sacrifice.
Eckelkamp, Drew Piontek and Quinton Poepsel stole bases.
Eckelkamp scored two of the runs. Drew Piontek, Hunter and Molitor also crossed the plate.
Schmidt posted two RBIs. Marquart drove in one, the game-winning run.
“Spencer Hunter also hit the ball hard again, but they just didn’t find holes,” Struckhoff said. “One of these days his luck is going to change.”
Grossius started and went four innings, allowing two runs on two hits and four walks. He struck out three.
Parks took the loss. Over four innings, he allowed three runs on four hits, one walk and two hit batters. He fanned seven.
Will Menendez singled twice. Adam Kopff, Dameon Willis and Alex Foppe doubled.