MISSOURIAN ROUNDUP: Oran baseball beats Bell City on Menz's walk-off single to claim second consecutive district title
The reigning Class 1 baseball state champions are still alive.
Oran beat Bell City 3-2 on a Dawson Menz walk-off single in the Class 1 District 2 championship Tuesday at Bell City High School.
The Eagles (10-9), who lost five starters from last year's championship team, had coughed up a two-run lead in the top of the seventh before Menz produced that two-out single to right field. Kole Simms scored the game-winning run after reaching on a one-out walk and advancing to third on a bunt and balk.
"Dawson battled up there," Oran coach Joe Bickings said. "He was able to take a pitch that was middle away and do something with it. We work on that in practice, not trying to do too much. Just take what the pitcher gives you. ... I was just hoping it would get down when he hit it because it looked like it might hang up there."
Ty Johnson went 6 2/3 innings before hitting his pitch count. He was replaced by Connor Kern, who was the winning pitcher.
Todd Priggel went 2-for-3 with a double and RBI to lead the Eagles, who beat Oak Ridge 12-2 in five innings in a semifinal earlier Tuesday. Priggel went 6-for-7 on the day with a home run and two doubles.
"He's kind of one our leaders," Bickings said. "To win games like that, your leaders have to step up. He was able to do that with his bat today. Ty Johnson pitched a heck of game. He had his pitch count, and he had some walks that hurt him a little bit, but he was able to get out of it. Kind of came back to bite him in the seventh, but we got out of it. Kaden Hargrove threw good in the semifinal too."
Bell City beat Leopold 9-3 in a semifinal before losing to Oran to finish the season with a 9-10 record.
Oran will travel to Cooter for a sectional game Monday.
"We faced them in the fall and they beat us by the 10-run rule and it's the team we faced last year in the sectional game," Bickings said. "They've got pretty much have everyone back from last year. It's going to be a battle and it's going be a good experience for our kids. ... Hopefully, our kids get a good experience, and we come out with the win."
Oran 3, Bell City 2
WP -- Connor Kern. LP -- Austin Nichols. 2B -- Todd Priggel (O). Multiple hits -- Priggel: 2-3.
Oran 12, Oak Ridge 2
WP -- Kaden Hargrove. LP -- Bryce Hahs. HR -- Todd Priggel (O). 2B -- Brent Seyer (OR), Ty Johnson (O), Priggel (O), Kole Simms (O). Multiple hits -- Priggel: 4-4.
Bell City 9, Leopold 3
WP -- Luke Nichols. LP -- Ryan Lewis. 2B -- Caleb Schaab (L), Jeffrey Allen (BC), JT Robey (BC), Evan Smith (BC). Multiple hits -- Bell City: Nichols 2-4, Allen 3-3, Robey 2-3, Smith 3-4.
Saxony Lutheran 3, Kelly 0
Eli Brown tossed a complete-game shutout, scattering seven hits and two walks over seven innings while striking out five, as the top-seeded Crusaders defeated the fourth-seeded Hawks in a Class 3 District 2 semifinal in Piedmont, Missouri.
Austin Fritsche went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored to lead Saxony (19-3) at the plate. Zach Meyr also had two hits and a run scored.
Ethan Koenig and Will LeDure also had run-scoring singles for the Crusaders.
Bryce Phelps had two hits for Kelly (19-6).
WP -- Eli Brown. LP -- Drew Dirnberger. 2B -- Peyton Eftink (K). Multiple hits -- Kelly: Bryce Phelps 2-3. Saxony: Zach Meyr 2-3, Austin Fritsche 2-3
Scott City 5, Clearwater 0
Behind a complete-game shutout from Neal Lowery, the third-seeded Rams defeated the second-seeded host Tigers in a Class 3 District 2 semifinal.
Lowery scattered four hits over seven innings, and Jimmy May had one of Scott City's two hits and scored twice.
The Rams (15-9) took advantage of three Clearwater (14-8) errors to score four unearned runs. Scott City broke the game open with four runs in the seventh and will face Saxony Lutheran in the championship at 4:30 p.m. today.
WP -- Neal Lowery. LP -- Jesse Holmes. 2B -- Landon O'Brien (SC). Holmes (C). Multiple hits -- Clearwater: Karson Fay 2-3.
Hillsboro 8, Jackson 6
Tyler Harris and Blaise Winder both had two hits, including a double, but the Indians couldn't overcome giving up six runs in the third and fell to the Hawks in the Class 5 District 1 semifinals in the St. Louis area.
Landon Hahn also had two hits for the Indians, who end the season with a 20-9 record.
Hillsboro scored six runs in the third, all unearned, on four errors in the frame. Tanner Hecht took the hard-luck loss, giving up six runs, none earned, in three innings.
Christian Hancock got the win for Hillsboro (13-6), tossing five innings of three-run ball and also hit two triples and two RBIs and scored once.
WP -- Christian Hancock. LP -- Tanner Hecht. 3B -- Hancock (H) 2. 2B -- Garret Pinkley (H) 2, Michael Brewer, Tyler Harris (J), Blaise Winder (J). Multiple hits -- Hillsboro: Brewer 2-4, Hancock 2-4, Pinkley 2-4. Jackson: Landon Hahn 2-3, Harris 2-4, Winder 2-4.
Cape Central 3, Sikeston 1
Abbie Clippard scored two goals as the top-seeded Tigers defeated the No. 4 Bulldogs in a Class 3 District 1 semifinal at Cape Girardeau High School.
Mattie Huff had the other goal for Central (16-5), which will host second-seeded North County in the championship at 6 p.m. Thursday.
No further information was provided.
Class 1 Sectional 1 Individual Tournament
The Notre Dame doubles pairing of Isaac Hopkins and Andrew West came from a set down to defeat Crystal City's William Denby and Carson Short 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 to advance to the Class 1 state tournament May 24-25 in Springfield, Missouri.
It's the third consecutive state appearance for the duo.
Eric Hahn (Dexter) def. Michael Esparza (Festus) 6-0, 6-0
Warren Chinwuko (Sikeston def. Luke Klahs (St Pius X) 6-3, 6-3
Isaac Hopkins/Andrew West (Notre Dame) def William Denby/Carson Short (Crystal City) 4-6, 7-5, 6-3
Vance/Doby (St Pius X) def. Wyman/Boles (D) 6-1, 6-2
-- From staff reports