It started as a rout.
But Saturday’s Missouri State Freshman Legion Tournament losers’ bracket game between the Washington Post 218 Freshmen and host Eureka Post 177 got interesting in a hurry.
In the end, Post 218 held on to beat Eureka at Ballwin Athletic Association, 13-8.
“It was our second game in the tournament, but it took three days to get here though,” Post 218 Manager Joe Kopmann said about the wait between Wednesday’s first-round contest and Saturday’s losers’ bracket game.
The final score was about the only detail the two teams agreed with each other. There were many differences between the two scorekeepers.
Post 218 set the tone with three runs in the top of the first inning. Washington added three more runs in the top of the second.
After Post 218 scored three times in the top of the fourth, Kopmann pulled starter Ethen Holland, hoping to save him for later in the tournament.
“Our starting pitcher was awesome,” Kopmann said. “Ethen Holland did another great job. We had a comfortable lead at the time at nine runs. We wanted to save his pitch count so we could use him later in the tournament.”
However, Eureka scored four times in the bottom of the third.
Washington added four runs in the top of the fourth, but Eureka matched that in the bottom of the inning.
After that, things got quiet again. Both teams had chances, but neither scored.
Post 218 credited itself with 10 hits while Eureka gave Washington 12 hits. Both sides charged Eureka with five errors. Eureka gave Post 218 one error while Washington charged itself with two.
Holland went three innings on 26 pitches, allowing one walk and striking out three.
Lane Roettering got the next two outs, allowing four runs on one hit, three walks and a hit batter. He struck out one.
Sam Strubberg pitched 2.2 innings, allowing four runs (three earned) on six hits, one walk and a hit batter. He struck out one.
Reagan Kandlbinder got the final two outs, including a strikeout.
By the Washington book, Noah Hendrickson led the offense with four hits. Three of those were doubles.
Noah Wilson had two hits, including one double.
Reagan Kandlbinder, Ryan Kassebaum, Drew Eckhoff and Holland each ended with one hit.
Washington had four walks with Kandlbinder, Kassebaum, Jack Dunard and Strubberg reaching base that way.
Eckhoff and Kassebaum each stole two bases. Kandlbinder, Justin Mort, Strubberg and Wilson had one stolen base apiece.
Kandlbinder, Kassebaum and Mort contributed sacrifice flies.
Wilson crossed the plate four times. Kandlbinder scored three runs.
Eckhoff, Strubberg and Tyler Kromer each scored twice.
Hendrickson drove in four runs. Kassebaum had three RBIs. Wilson, Kandlbinder, Mort and Lane Mallinckrodt posted one RBI apiece.
“We hope our offense can continue to hit,” Kopmann said. “Defensively, we were really sound today. We just need to continue to hit.”
For Eureka, Coby Williams and Brendan Pletz each had two hits. Pletz doubled along with Ryan Holtz.
Gavin Bradley, Joshua West and Elijah Craft singled.
Bradley, Trey Hanneke, Oliver Orendain and George Sauer walked.
West and Hanneke were hit by pitches. West stole two bases.
West and Hanneke both scored twice. Bradley, Holtz, Williams and Orendain scored once.
Pletz had two RBIs. West, Holtz, Williams and Sauer drove in one run apiece.
West started and went two innings, allowing seven runs (four earned) on seven hits and one walk.
Nick Fisher was next, going 2.2 innings while allowing eight runs (three earned) on five hits and two walks. He struck out three.
Orendain got one out and walked one.
Williams finished the game, pitching two innings while striking out five.
“We hit well until they brought in Williams,” Kopmann said. “Wow. He shut us down for two innings. I’m surprised he didn’t start for them, but that was fortunate for us.”