Losing 1-0 earlier in the season on the road against the Jamestown Eagles was hope in itself for the Pilot Grove Tigers baseball team.
As expected, the Eagles and Tigers both hooked up again in a winner take all Saturday in the championship in the Class 1 District 11 Tournament at Boonville High School.
Although Pilot Grove had a survive a scare one night earlier against Prairie Home in the semifinal round, winning 8-6, the Tigers had already moved on with bigger aspirations on Saturday.
Unfortunately for Pilot Grove, they forgot to bring their A game as Jamestown senior Garrett Wolfe silenced the Tiger hitters while giving up only two hits in four innings and going 4-for-4 at the plate with three singles, one triple and one RBI to lead the Eagles to a 9-2 victory.
While the Tigers closed out the season at 9-8 overall, head coach Neal Bailey said he was proud of the way the guys played all year. “They worked hard all season to improve, we just came up a little short.”
As for Jamestown, they will move on to sectionals on Monday at Silex starting at 6 p.m. The Eagles are currently 14-4 while Silex is 13-3.
Of course it wasn’t just Wolfe’s pitching that kept the Tigers from moving on. Pilot Grove also had trouble moving runners over. With only three hits in the game, Pilot Grove didn’t have two runners on base until the third inning and didn’t have a runner advance to third until the sixth.
As for Jamestown, they also struggled at times while scoring in just three of the seven innings. However the two runs in the first set the tone early as the Eagles had two hits in their first three at bats to go up 1-0. The second run, meanwhile, came on a throwing error to make it 2-0.
Jamestown never trailed after that but even then Pilot Grove kept the game close while trailing by just two through the first-four innings.
Meanwhile, in the fifth, the Eagles sent nine runners to the plate and scored five runs on three hits, two walks and one error to extend the lead to 7-0.
Then, in the sixth inning, Pilot Grove finally got on the board with two runs on a RBI-single to right center by Austin Kollmeyer and a ground out back to the pitcher by Donnavon Gerke to cut the lead to five at 7-2.
The Tigers never got any closer as Jamestown came back and tacked on two more runs in the bottom-half of the inning on the RBI-triple to center by Wolfe and a fielder’s choice to short by Clark Rohrbach for the victory.
Wolfe also picked up the win on the mound for Jamestown while Bailey Quint took the loss for Pilot Grove, dropping him to 6-3 on the season. In addition to giving up two hits in four innings, Wolfe also struck out seven batters and walked three. Austin Flippin then came in and pitched three innings in relief and allowed two runs on one hit while striking out five.
For Pilot Grove, Quint pitched the first four innings and gave up two runs on four hits and three walks while striking out five. Austin Kollmeyer then came in and pitched two innings in relief and surrendered seven runs on five hits and two walks while striking out one batter.
Jamestown also out-hit Pilot Grove 9-3, with Wolfe collecting four of the team’s nine hits. Nick Perez had one single and two RBIs while Cole Thiessen added one single and one RBI and Austin Flippin, Jarrett Gorman and Mack Sorrells each with one single. Clark Rohrbach also drove in two runs.
For Pilot Grove, Austin Kollmeyer went 1-for-3 with a single and one RBI while Bailey Quint and Gavin Shepherd each had one single.