The season series goes to the Post 297 Freshmen.
Playing Washington Post 218 for the third and final time this season, Union Post 297 scored a 4-2 victory in the winner’s bracket semifinal Saturday at Pacific High School as part of the Ninth District Tournament.
Union (21-7-2) and Washington (18-8) exchanged 5-4 wins during the regular season with the home team coming out on top on both occasions. On a neutral field, Union battled back from behind to take the win.
Post 297 went on to beat Hannibal Post 55 Sunday, 3-0, to advance to Tuesday’s championship round while Post 218 was eliminated in a 5-4 loss to Pacific Post 320 on Sunday.
Jayden Overschmidt was Union’s star of the game on both sides of the ball. Not only was he the winning pitcher, but Overschmidt also scored the go-ahead run and drove in an insurance run late.
On the mound, Overschmidt recorded all but the first out. In 6.2 innings pitched, he gave up no runs on five hits and five walks, striking out three.
“Jayden Overschmidt came into a tough spot with bases loaded in the first inning and got us out of that with minimal damage,” Post 297 Manager Ryan Bailey said. “From there, he threw enough strikes to let his defense work for him and at times was able to get some big strikeouts.”
Post 218’s two runs were charged against Hayden Burke, who walked the bases loaded and recorded one out before taking Overschmidt’s place in center field in the pitching switch.
Post 297 answered Washington’s two runs with one score in the bottom of the first. Overschmidt held Post 218 off the scoreboard the rest of the way.
“After the first (inning), our offense couldn’t get anything going, hitting 12 fly balls and hitting into three double plays,” Post 218 Manager Joe Kopmann said. “We also left eight runners on base. We had baserunners all day but could not get the big hit.”
Marshall Gebert’s bases-loaded knock in the fifth inning scored two runs to give Union the lead. Overschmidt singled to left in the sixth to drive in Dalton Voss.
The Post 297 defense came through in key situations to keep it a one-run game long enough for Union’s bats to make the difference in the last two innings.
“We made a couple of big plays on defense to get double plays that killed innings for Washington,” Bailey said. “We turned a traditional double play in the fifth and got a line out to right field where we doubled up the runner in the second and a line out to the pitcher where we doubled up the runner at second again for our first two outs in the seventh. Defense wins games and it definitely did for us today.”
For Post 218 on the mound, Gavin Matchell started and allowed one run on no hits and four walks across three innings. Matchell struck out two batters.
Weston Meyer threw two innings in relief, allowing two runs on three hits and two walks.
Mitchell Meyer finished out the game, allowing one run on one hit and one walk in the final inning.
Of Post 297’s four hits, Conner Borgmann and Colin Gerdel had the other two along with Gebert and Overschmidt.
Overschmidt scored twice, Voss once and Ryan Ewald once.
Gebert finished with two runs batted in. Overschmidt and Alex Kuelker both drove in a run.
Overschmidt drew two walks. Borgmann, Kuelker, Burke, Voss and Gerdel walked once.
For Post 218, Luke Kleekamp collected two hits, including a two-RBI double in the first.
Scott Gross doubled and Owen Struckhoff and Jacob Baldwin each singled.
“You’ve got to tip your hat to Union’s pitcher,” Kopmann said of Overschmidt. “He kept our batters off balance. We had the tying runs on base in the seventh but he got another fly ball to end the game.”
Zach Mort and Lucas Newhouse scored the two Washington runs.
Mort walked three times. Newhouse, Struckhoff, Matchell, Aden Pecka and Mitchell Meyer all walked once.
Kleekamp, Mort, Pecka and Wyatt Sneed all stole a base.