Flyers storm into district championship game
LUCASVILLE — After the St. Joseph Flyers had seen enough, they went out and scored more than enough.
Batters in the Flyers lineup failed to score in their first at-bats, but that changed the second times around as St. Joseph scored all its runs in the final four innings and routed the Beaver Eastern Eagles 10-0 in six innings in the Division IV district semifinals.
“After we went through the lineup, we adjusted to their pitcher. And they helped us. We hit the ball hard and put it in play, they just didn’t field it very well at times,” said Flyers coach Greg Bryant.
The game was scoreless until the bottom of the third inning when the Flyers scored twice.
With one out, Tre Stambaugh and Ryan Schwab both reached on errors. A wild pitch moved the runners up and they scored when Pat Gagai was safe on another error.
St. Joseph added a run in the fourth with two outs. Chad Harvey singled, stole second and came home on a hit by Michael Basedow.
The Flyers erupted for four runs in the fifth inning and three more in the sixth.
Schwab reached on an error to start the fifth, stole second, moved to third when Gagai put down a sacrifice bunt and scored on a double by Caleb Blackburn.
Cory Lewis had an RBI single to score pinch-runner Dylan Klein, Ryan Waginger reached on an error and Harvey doubled to drive in both runners.
In the sixth inning, Schwab drew a one-out walk, stole second, and Jerrod Laber reached on an error as the run scored.
Laber went to second on the error and scored on Blackburn’s base hit. Lewis walked and Waginger singled to send home the final run.
Blackburn got the win as he struck out seven, walked three and allowed just two singles.
“Once we got Caleb a lead and got the pressure off, he got in a pretty good groove,” said Bryant.
The Flyers banged out 10 hits with Lewis and Harvey going 2-3 and Blackburn 2-4.
St. Joseph, 18-4, plays at 1 p.m. Saturday at the University of Rio Grande against the winner of Friday’s game between Leesburg Fairfield and Racine Southern.
The Leesburg vs. Racine game was postponed Wednesday due to wet grounds.
St. Joseph is seeking its first district championship since 1982.
Devin Swiggett, Brian Osborne (5) and Allen Osborne. Caleb Blackburn and Pat Gagai. W-Blackburn (7-K, 3-BB). L-Swiggett (2-K, 0-BB, 8-H, 7-R, 1-ER). 2B-St. Joseph: Caleb Blackburn, Chad Harvey. Hitting-Eastern: Ian Bapst 1-3, Jay Brown 1-2; St.Joseph: Ryan Schwab 1-3, Pat Gagai 1-3, Caleb Blackburn 2-4, Cory Lewis 2-3, Ryan Waginger 1-4, Chad Harvey 2-3, Michael Basedow 1-3.