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Meadowbrook outlasts Knights

By JEFF HARRISON The Daily Jeffersonian Published: May 13, 2017 5:00 AM
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BYESVILLE -- Based on records and seeds, the Meadowbrook-West Holmes clash in the Division II Sectional Tournament figured to be tightly contested.

The game played out as expected with fourth-seeded Meadowbrook manufacturing a run in the bottom of the fifth inning and then surviving a bases-loaded situation by sixth-seeded West Holmes in the seventh to earn a 2-1 victory and a spot in next week's district semifinals.

Each team scored once in the opening frame and it was a pitcher's duel from there with Meadowbrook's Logan Fox and West Holmes' Kendrick Wagler matching zeroes until the bottom of the fifth.

DH Devin Norman opened the Meadowbrook fifth by reaching on a West Holmes error.

Garrett Clendenning then pushed an attempted sacrifice bunt past Wagler on the mound for a base hit and Wade Urdak followed with a single to right to load the bases.

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Ben Davis delivered what proved to be the winning run with a sacrifice fly to left which scored Norman and put the Colts in front, 2-1.

A force play at the plate and a strikeout averted further damage for the Knights.

Meadowbrook threatened to add to its lead in the sixth when David Scharenberg drilled a one-out triple and Ryan Rusnak walked, but West Holmes' lefty reliever Jake Donaldson posted back-to-back Ks to give his team one final shot.

In the top of the seventh, Slade Barnes and Trenton Yoder delivered consecutive one-out singles and Drew Campbell walked with two outs, but it wasn't to be for the Knights as Fox induced a game-ending groundout to second base.

Meadowbrook coach Tyler Engle credited his team's resiliency and a strong effort from the pitching and defense as keys to the victory.

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"We had some runners in scoring position with two outs and didn't get them in, but we didn't take our at-bats to the field," said Engle. "Logan bucked up for us and pitched well. He made the pitches when had had to and we made the plays behind him.

"We've got some guys in our outfield who can flat-out go get it," said the MHS coach, referring to the trio of Scharenberg, Konnor Roberts and Davis. "When you make a team get multiple hits to score, it makes it tougher on them. Our pitchers should never be afraid to throw strikes because those guys will go get it.

"We came in with five straight losses -- three of them one-run games," he added, "but these guys are just very resilient and I'm very proud of them."

Fox went the distance on the mound for Meadowbrook, posting two strikeouts, three walks and two hit batsmen. Wagler had two Ks and one walk in taking the loss for West Holmes, with Donaldson notching four strikeouts in relief.

Scharenberg's triple and single paced the Colts while Yoder's two singles led the Knights.

For West Holmes (13-12), it was a tough way for the season to end.

"It was two evenly-matched teams, so we thought it would come down to execution," said Knights coach Bill Pim, "and they got the run when it counted and we couldn't get the big hit we needed.

"Our pitchers both threw well, but you've got to score more than one run to win," he added.

"Right now, it hurts," said Pim, "but the kids gave me everything they had so I've got no complaints."

West Holmes got its only run in the top of the first inning on a walk to Barnes, singles by Yoder and Campbell and a groundout by Brenden Bridenthal.

Meadowbrook evened the count at 1-1 in the bottom of the inning on a one-out walk to Davis and an RBI double to right-center by Stevie McPeek.


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