Despite some stormy weather this week, some of the top teams were able to squeeze in games towards the end of the week. Here we go on our trip through the "top tens"...lets start with Class 4
Now the #1 team Rock Bridge (19-1) has played only twice in the last two weeks! Their only game this week was a 4-2 win over Kirksville(10-7) in what might be termed an "ugly" win. Recording as many hits as errors (3) When Jr. Ryan Phillips took over the pitching duties in the 6th, the rust seemed to evaporate( and the confidence emerge) and suddenly, the Bruins looked like the #1 rated team (that they now hold!)
The #2 team--Parkway South (18-1) played a two game series with the #9 team-Oakville this past weekend. South won 15-5 on Friday as they pounded out 16 hits and capitalized on a defensive miscue with the bases loaded in two big innings. On Saturday, Chad Gendron was dominant on the hill for the Tigers as Oakville won 6-1. Like Friday, Oakville took advantage of the opportunities that were presented as they scored all their runs in just two of the innings. So now what...each of these talented teams won one of the two games. Guess, post season will tell the difference as each team will put their ace on the bump.
Jumping up to the #6 hole are the Liberty Bluejays (16-3). After winning the Northland Tournament 1-0 over the #5, Class 4 team Staley (17-2) by 1-0 score, Liberty made people sit up and take notice. This week, the Bluejays fell behind 7-1 to Park Hill after two innings then rallied. Pecking away gradually with a run here and there, Zach Pirrello tied the game in the 7th -- HBP, stole 2B and scored on a passed ball. Liberty scored the winning run in the 8th on another passed ball. . Spencer Schwandt pitched 6 1/3rd innings of relief to gain the win. While pleased to move up the rankings, a head-head win over Staley gives the Bluejays hopes of even high rankings in the upcoming weeks. Meanwhile, Staley upended Kearney 8-1 in other action during the week.
The Webb City Cardinals (#8,13-5) split two games this week. The Cards hung on to edge Carthage(11-5) 4-3 as the Tigers pushed across two runs in the 7th to make this one exciting. Later in the week, the Branson Pirates (#10, 13-3) made the most of their four hits as Daniel Batt's three-run double was the big hit of the game as they knocked off Webb City by a single run. Winning pitcher, Taylor Tankersly scattered nine hits and struck out six in the win.
Looking to move into the top ten are the Holt Indians (12-5)who won three games this week, two were over top-level teams. After beating Ft Zumwalt West 11-1, Holt toppled Howell Central (15-4) by a 7-2 score. Nate Giessmann was the hitting star for the Indians in this one. He went 3 for 4, 2 RBI with a triple and a home run. The next day,Holt scored seven runs in the 7th to pull out a thrilling 10-9 win over Howell North (14-7).
At the class 2 level, the new #1 is the Valle Catholic Warriors(15-3). Valle won four games this week but the “big win” was the victory over their intra-city rival, Ste. Genevieve. Valle jumped ahead with five runs in the first inning but then had to fight to hang on to an 8-7.
Crystal City (13-4)drops to the #2 ranking. In their only game of the week, ace Alex Winkelmann threw a no-hitter against Grandview as the Hornets won 10-0. Winkelmann struck out 16 batters in this 6 inning contest. Remember ... only 18 outs in a 6 inning game and 16 were K's....man !
Conway (#2) moved their record to 15-2 with a win in their only game this week. The 10-0 win over Norwood saw a weird box-score. Only four hits for the winners in this five inning. However, one does see that Conway received 14 walks in this 5 inning game.
Drawing attention at the other end ot the top ten is New Bloomfield (8-3). That noise you hear in the background isn't more thunderstorms, its the loud, booming bats of the Wildcats. Two home runs against Eugene on one night set the tone. The next day, there were two home runs ... this time by consecutive batters on the way to a 20-1 drubbing of Tuscumbia. An 8 run explosion in the opening inning set the tone for the huge 19 hit game. The Wildcats kept the bats sizzling as they traveled to Blair Oaks. New Bloomfield beat the Falcons 14-4 in another abbreviated game (6 innings)
Hoping to pop into the rankings are the Green Wave of Malden. Now at 13-4 after an impressive 9-4 win over Kennett. The nine run total was the most runs of the season permitted by the stingy Indian pitching staff. Granted, the Indians held back their top hurlers but the win for Malden shows significant progress in the program. After Kennet jumped ahead 2-0, Tanner Murphy tied it for Malden with a two-run shot. From that point on, it was all Malden. Murphy recorded the complete game win.
In the Class 3 rankings, #1 Westminster Christian Wildcats (13-3)dropped their only game of the week to the Ladue Rams (10-2) by a 7-3 score. The Rams outhit the Wildcats 12-7. Ladue used thier 1-2 pitching punch in Robbie Gordon and Jason Sandler in the win.
Also playing only one game this week was the #2 team, St Francis Borgia(13-2). The Knights were pushed to the limit (and more) by Union (8-7). The nine inning affair was won by Borgia 6-5. It was the first game in 8 days for Borgia and probably for many other teams across the soggy state.
The Savannah Savages (14-2) beat Chillicothe this week 11-1 as they hold on to their #4 spot. Tyler Wilt went the complete 5 innings for the win.
Meanwhile, the #5 team, John Burroughs pushed their record to 12-1 with two more wins through Friday. The Bombers beat Whitfield 10-5 and Clayton 8-3. Burroughs has yet to be beaten in Missouri this year! Both losses occurred in an early season trip to Florida.
Looking forward to moving up in the rankings, the N.Calloway Thunderbirds are now 13-0 after whipping Mexico 13-0 this week. The T-Birds used the strong, complete game pitching of Grant Cundiff and a 13 hit attack led by Zac Key and Collin Brinker. Each player had three hits and Key popped one over the boards.
Grain Valley (15-2) was hoping to "make a statement" with a win over Lee Summit North (11-8)this week. The 9-8 loss was tough to take after two marvelous rallies. Trailing 5-0, the Eagles crossed the plate 7 times in the 6th. North tied it up with two in the bottom half of the inning. GrainValley scored took an 8-7 in the top of the 7th only to see Northscore twice, again, in the bottom of the 7th.
In Class 1, top rated Cooter won the Tri-county Conference Tournament for the 6th Consecutive year. The Wildcats 5-3 victory over the Holcomb Hornets was wrapped up by Zach Watkins huge strikeout performance-- 11 for the game and 13 for the day (Cooter had a semifinal game on the same day) Cooter had beaten Risco 3-2 in teh semifinal.
Concordia beat Wellington-Napolean on Saturday 6-2 so they should hold onto their #3 spot in the rankings.
#5 Laplata remains 7-0 as they are unable to get in any games in this week. Hopefully, this week will see more sun and more excitement on the diamonds.
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