The scenario was simple.
Win and keep playing or lose and the season is over.
Washington Post 218 wasn’t ready to go home.
Washington advanced to the championship series of the 2014 Missouri Freshmen Legion State Tournament with an 8-3 win over Creve Coeur Post 397 during an elimination game on Saturday morning at Rotary Recreational Complex - Ronsick Field.
The win propelled Washington into the tourney’s final series against Ste. Genevieve.
“The win against Creve Coeur was huge for us,” Washington Manager Scott Forrester said. “It took awhile, but then we finally put it on them. And they were kind of underrated in the tournament. Creve Coeur played some good baseball. But our pitching did what it needed to.”
Yes it did. Zach Stahlman earned the win on the bump, going seven strong innings. Stahlman gave up just one earned run while striking out five.
Nathan Breckenkamp and Eli Marquart both had two RBIs for Post 218, while Matt Piontek and Jacob Unnerstall drove in one run apiece. Matt Piontek had three hits, while Teddy Meyer and Marquart had two apiece. Marquart scored twice, while Zach Finley, Drew Piontek, Matt Piontek, Tommy Ruether, Unnerstall and Meyer scored one run apiece.
Creve Coeur had six hits in the game, with Noah Campbell and Caleb Joyce driving in runs. Mitchell Goldenberg got the start and went three innings, allowing three runs (one earned) in the loss. Campbell gave up two runs in two innings and Duncan Bryan allowed one run in one inning of work.
The game was scoreless until the third, when Washington scored three times.
With one out, Ruether and Drew Piontek were both hit by pitches. Marquart laid down a bunt, Post 397 threw the ball away and a run scored. Piontek then scored on a wild pitch. A double steal allowed the third run to score before Creve Coeur got out of the inning.
Post 397 stranded the bases loaded in the bottom half. Goldenberg singled with one out, and then Adam Boonshaft flied out. Bryan doubled and then Tanner Litchfield walked. But Washington pitcher Stahlman forced Adam Kerwood to pop out.
Post 218 added three key insurance runs in an active fifth inning.
Drew Piontek doubled and went to third on a wild pitch. Piontek was out at home, but Unnerstall reached on the fielder’s choice. Unnerstall then stole second and later came home when Post 397 couldn’t field Matt Piontek’s hard ground ball up the middle. Meyer singled and then Breckenkamp lined a two-run double to left, scoring Matt Piontek and Meyer for a 6-0 advantage.
One inning later, Washington got back-to-back RBI singles from Marquart and Unnerstall for a comfortable 8-0 lead.
Creve Coeur didn’t go down quietly, as Post 397 scored three runs in the seventh, with singles from Joyce and Campbell, along with an error in the field by Post 218.
But Stahlman then recorded the final out for the complete game win.
Creve Coeur was eliminated with the loss and the only two teams left standing were Washington and Ste. Genevieve.
Creve Coeur had knocked off Jackson, 11-7, on Friday night to stay alive in the tourney.