Prairie Home junior Blake Petsel tosses a no-hit shutout
The Bunceton Dragons and Prairie Home Panthers baseball team will play for another day after winning in the opening round of the Class 1 District 11 Tournament Tuesday night in Pilot Grove.
Although the semifinal round figures to get tougher for both teams against the No. 1 and 2 seeds, Bunceton and Prairie Home will take any win they can get at this point in the season.
The Dragons defeated Higbee 12-7 while Prairie Home upended Glasgow 10-0 in five innings.
Bunceton, 8-5 on the season, will get the tournament’s No. 1 seed in Jamestown on Thursday starting at 5 p.m. As for Prairie Home, they will face No. 2 Pilot Grove at 7 p.m.
“We played probably one of the best games we have played all year,” said Prairie Home coach Trever Huth. “The boys were excited and ready to play and it showed on the field. We played a great team game and effort in getting this win. We moved runners over when we needed to and hit the ball to the right side to drive runners in with less than two outs. Blake Petsel pitched a great game by throwing strikes all night and keeping the tempo up for the defense behind him.”
While the Panthers were the more impressive of the two teams, it still took them a while to get the offense going. After playing two innings of scoreless baseball, Prairie Home finally got on the board with three runs in the bottom-half of the third. Then, after adding another run in the fourth to make it 4-0, the Panthers came back and broke the game wide open with a six run fifth inning for the victory.
Blake Petsel picked up the win on the mound for Prairie Home while Shay Himmelberg took the loss for Glasgow. In five innings, Petsel struck out 13 batters and gave up just four walks. Himmelberg, meanwhile, pitched 4 1/3 innings and allowed eight runs on nine hits and two walks while striking out five.
Prairie Home also out-hit Glasgow 10-0, with Kassen Lock going 3-for-3 with three singles and two RBIs. Clayton Pethan was 2-for-3 with a single, double and one RBI. Petsel also doubled and drove in two runs while Alex Rhode added a double and one RBI, Blane Petsel one single and two RBIs, Mason Wells and Billy Kellum each with one single and Creed Flood with one RBI.
As for the Bunceton Dragons, they made it look easy early on while exploding for six runs in the bottom-half of the first.
But even that was short-lived as Higbee rallied back with six runs in the top-half of the second to tie the game at 6-all.
The Tigers never got any closer to taking the lead as Bunceton scored at least one run in the next four innings to extend the lead to 12-6. Then, in the top-half of the sixth, Higbee tacked on another run to finish the scoring.
Dillon Alpers was the pitcher of record in the game for Bunceton while Seth Kirby took the loss for Higbee.
Bunceton also out-hit Higbee 10-6, with Jason Burnett going 2-for-4 with a singles, triple and one RBI. Dylan Flatt finished the game with two singles and three RBIs while Hunter Shuffield added two singles and one RBI, Layne Maddex one double and three RBIs, Austin Anderson and Austin Alpers each with one single and one RBI and Knapheide with one single.
For Higbee, Kirby had two hits and two RBIs.