Two-out runs batted in made the difference for the Washington Post 218 Juniors Sunday.
That’s how Post 218 (5-1) scored both of its runs in a 2-0 win against Pacific Post 320 (2-5) in the first game of a doubleheader. Washington also prevailed in the second contest, 7-2.
The Post 218 pitchers combined for 13 shutout innings between the two games. Pacific scored its only two runs in the bottom of the seventh inning in game two.
Just 48 hours after watching his brother, Bryce, pitch St. Francis Borgia Regional to the Class 4 state championship, Brayden Mayer delivered a scoreless pitching performance of his own.
Mayer held Post 320 to no runs on two hits and three walks in 4.1 innings Sunday during Game One. He struck out two.
“Brayden Mayer took the hill for us for the first time this year and did a fantastic job working the first four innings for us,” Post 218 Manager Kent Getsee said. “He worked ahead, made key pitches and kept Pacific off the board.”
Jayden Mach opposed Post 218 on the mound for Pacific. He threw five innings and surrendered two runs on five hits and five walks with five strikeouts.
“We couldn’t find a way to manufacture any runs,” Post 320 Manager Phil Gilcrease said. “Jayden Mach threw a great game, only giving up two runs. Washington plays a sound defensive game and made some good plays.”
Tristan Molitor earned the save for Post 218. He came into the game in the fifth inning and worked out of a bases loaded jam. In 2.2 innings pitched, he allowed no runs on no hits and one walk, striking out three.
“He too worked ahead for the most part and used his defense to make the plays behind him,” Getsee said. “Our defense was great behind him turning one double play and just making the routine plays.
Mach turned the ball over to Dylan Myers for Pacific in the sixth inning. Myers allowed one baserunner on a walk in his one inning pitched.
Post 218 scored both of its runs with two outs in the bottom of the second.
After the first two batters grounded out, Jacob Lombardo and Gavin Mueller both reached on walks.
Jacob Bauche then punched a single into left field, scoring Lombardo.
The next batter, Jack Lackman, flared one into right field and brought Mueller to the plate.
Bauche finished with two hits and a walk in the game.
“Offensively, we had a slow start with the wood bats for the first time this year,” Getsee said. “Jacob Bauche led the way with two hits. He continues to find a way onto the bases and makes it hurt when he gets on. We have some work to do handling the wood bats, but we were efficient and did all the damage with two outs, so we’ll take the first win with wood bats for sure.”
Mueller, Lackman and Zac Coulter each contributed a single.
Sam Glosemeyer, Mayer and Molitor all reached on walks.
For Post 320, shortstop Jack Meyer had the only two hits, both singles.
Carter Myers, Dylan Myers, Tanner Biedenstein and Ethan Simpson all walked.
While catching, Carter Myers threw out the game’s only attempted basestealer.
The offense was more prevalent in the rematch as Post 218 scored seven runs on nine hits.
Washington scored once in the first inning, but did most of its damage in the top of the third, scoring six times.
This time, Mueller controlled the mound for Post 218 for the first four innings. He allowed no runs on one hit and three walks with four strikeouts.
“Gavin Mueller took the bump for us and did great in his Post 218 debut,” Getsee said. “He went four innings and struck out four and used a good mix of pitches to keep Pacific on their heels. Gavin gave us a very competitive start, which on the back end of a doubleheader is key.”
Lackman fired the next two shutout frames, surrendering two hits and two walks, but striking out four.
“Jack Lackman also made his Post 218 debut on the bump to follow Gavin and he was equally good going two innings and picking up four strikeouts,” Getsee said. “Jack has a good frame on him and when his mechanics are in sync the ball explodes out of his hand, so we’ll continue to nurture that.”
Lombardo pitched the final inning for Post 218. He gave up two runs on one hit and a walk.
“Jacob Lombardo came in to close it out and was touched for the two runs with a walk and a hit, but he too has nice mechanics at times and we have been asking our guys to get ahead and they ran into one of his fastballs to plate a couple of runs,” Getsee said. “ He stayed tough and finished it for us though. All three guys had stellar defense behind them. We made all the right plays and Sam Heggemann caught one runner and was tough for us catching both ends of the doubleheader and shutting down any thoughts of running on him.”
Stephen Loeffel started for Post 320, exiting during the big Washington rally in the third inning. Loeffel was charged with seven unearned runs over 2.2 innings pitched on seven hits and two walks.
Sam Knotts threw the final 4.1 innings for Pacific and allowed no runs on two hits with one strikeout.
“The next game we gave up (runs) early and never bounced back,” Gilcrease said. “Andrew Payne had a solid double to right that scored two but it wasn’t enough to get the job done.”
Heggemann, Tyler Stieffermann and Louis Paule each had a two-hit game for Post 218.
Logan Dieckman, Calvin Straatmann and Molitor connected for one hit each.
“We picked up nine hits in the nightcap, which is a good sign,” Getsee said. “ Pacific made us use the bats so plating seven runs was a solid outing this early on. We did strand eight runners, so one more key hit and things would have opened up more, but such is a wood bat game.”
Heggemann’s double was the only extra-base knock for Post 218.
Coulter, Mayer, Glosemeyer, Stieffermann, Paule, Dieckman and Bauche all came around to score a run.
Stieffermann collected two RBIs. Glosemeyer, Heggemann, Straatmann and Molitor each drove in a run.
Coulter walked twice.
Paule laid down a sacrifice bunt.
Stieffermann and Straatmann both stole a base.
Of Post 320’s four hits, Payne had two — a double and a single. Payne drove in both Pacific runs.
Trevor Klund singled and scored. Faolin Kreienkamp scored the other run.
Mach also singled in the contest.
Biedenstein reached on two walks. Tyler Anderson, Meyer, Knotts and Kreienkamp all walked once.
Post 218 went on the road to play Rhineland Post 147 Tuesday and returns home Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. to take on Warrenton VFW Post 2180.
Post 320 will play host to St. Peters Post 313 Wednesday at 6 p.m.