Runs were plentiful for the Union Post 297 Freshmen last Thursday.
Post 297 (14-7-2, 7-2) picked up two Ninth District victories on the road at Rosebud Post 587 (4-6, 3-5), 15-1 and 11-3.
Rosebud turned in a combined 18 errors in the two games, 11 of which came in the first contest.
“We were able to get up early due to gifted runs by the other team,” Union Post 297 Manager Ryan Bailey said. “Walks and errors can lead to lopsided games and that’s what happened tonight. We didn’t hit much but it’s hard when you don’t get many strikes to hit.”
Post 297 totaled just three hits in the contest, but walked nine times and took advantage of the 11 Rosebud errors to end the game in five innings.
Luke Koch, Hayden Burke and Jayden Overschmidt each singled.
Koch and Burke scored three runs apiece.
Cooper Bailey and Dalton Voss each scored twice while Conner Borgmann, Alex Kuelker, Overschmidt, Tanner Hall and Collin Gerdel all scored a run.
Burke drove in two runs. Cooper Bailey, Marshall Gebert, Borgmann and Nick Birke each picked up an RBI.
Walks were issued to Koch, Cooper Bailey, Burke, Gebert, Voss, Overschmidt, Hall, Ryan Ewald and Gerdel.
Overschmidt stole three bases.
Ewald and Koch each stole twice. Burke, Gebert, Hall, Kuelker and Voss were each credited with a stolen base.
On the mound, Kuelker held Rosebud to one run on one hit and a walk with six strikeouts over 4.1 innings to earn the win.
“Alex Kuelker pitched another very nice game,” Ryan Bailey said. “He’s becoming the pitcher we can throw in the big game and be confident we’ll have a chance. He throws strikes and competes and he did that again Thursday night.”
Voss got the final two outs. He allowed one hit and one walk.
The second game ended much like the first as Post 297 picked up four hits, walked 10 times and Rosebud committed seven errors.
However, both teams remained scoreless through the first three innings and it was Rosebud that scored first in the top of the fourth.
“Although the final score doesn’t show it this game was a pitching duel for most of the night,” Ryan Bailey said. “Rosebud’s pitcher, Will Mentz, was teammates with many of our kids and he came out and dominated them early on. Hayden Burke was on the mound for us and he was bringing it as well.”
Union came back with two runs in the fourth, but Post 587 retook the lead with two runs in the fifth.
Post 297 made the difference with a nine-run rally in the bottom of the sixth inning.
Borgmann had two hits for Post 297, both singles. Gerdel and Hall each connected for a single.
Overschmidt scored three runs and Voss two. Cooper Bailey, Kuelker, Burke, Hall, Gerdel and Birke each scored once.
Kuelker, Hall, Gerdel and Birke were all credited with an RBI.
Cooper Bailey, Voss, Ewald and Hall each drew two walks. Borgmann and Gerdel both walked once.
Voss and Overschmidt stole three bases each and Cooper Bailey stole twice.
On the mound, Burke pitched the first three innings and shut out Rosebud on one hit and two walks, striking out four.
“Hayden threw great for us and we got him out early to save some pitching for games coming up,” Ryan Bailey said.
Gebert got the next two outs and allowed a run on one hit and three walks with one strikeout.
Borgmann was the next pitcher in for Post 297 and ended up with the win. He threw 2.1 innings and surrendered two runs on three hits and a walk while striking out two.
“Borgmann was our third pitcher of the game and he came in during a bases-loaded jam in the fourth and was able to get us out of that and then after a rough fifth inning Conner was lights out the rest of the game,” Ryan Bailey said. “He has been throwing great as of late and it’s always nice to have another quality arm as the year goes on.”
Overschmidt closed out the game. He walked one and struck out one while allowing no hits.
The Post 297 Freshmen hosted Pacific Post 320 Tuesday and will next play at a tournament in Sikeston over the weekend.