It was a battle of southpaws, with Columbia emerging victorious over Gibault in a cold, windy baseball contest Friday night at GCS Ballpark in Sauget.
Eagles starting pitcher Josh Fleming cooled down the Gibault bats, striking out 11 in six innings for a 4-0 Columbia victory. Brendan Wilhelm pitched the seventh. Together, they held the Hawks to just one hit.
Gibault starting pitcher Zach Neff took the loss, but pitched well in defeat. He struck out 11 Eagles over seven innings.
Columbia picked up its first run in the top of the third inning, and threatened again in the fifth before Gibault ended the scoring chance. The Eagles scored again in the top of the sixth inning as a result of a two-base infield error.
Up 2-0 in the top of the seventh, the Eagles tacked on two more runs on a Zach Mathews triple that plated two.
Columbia improved to 6-3 with the win.
“Josh was outstanding on the mound,” Columbia head coach Keith Jany said. “Brendan came on in the seventh to get a strike- out and a double play to end the game. This was a team win, as many guys contributed to the victory.”
Mathews had two hits in the game, as did Quentin Spivey.
“It was a nice win, but we never doubted that we could beat them,” Jany said.
Prior to the Gibault game, the Eagles defeated Steeleville last Tuesday at home, 7-2.
Brett Luther got the start on the mound, but had to leave after two innings due to a back injury.
“We will know more about Brett after Wednesday”, Jany said.
Cole Foster took over pitching duties and picked up the win, pitching five innings and striking out 12 Steeleville batters.
Foster helped his own cause at the plate, going 2-for-3. Camren Shewfelt also had two hits, and Patrick McDermott picked up two RBIs.
After traveling to Carlyle on Tuesday (result not known at press time), Columbia hosts Okawville Wednesday and travels to Red Bud Thursday.
Gibault, meanwhile, defeated Chester last Tuesday before the loss to Columbia.
The Hawks (5-4) struggled on the mound against Chester, walking nine hitters. Fortunately, the offense provided 12 hits — two each from Mitch Meyer, Chandler Purcell, Wes Degener and Jordan McFarland — in an 11-9 win.
McFarland had three RBIs, Purcell added two RBIs and three runs scored, and Josh Brinkmann had two RBIs.
“Brinkmann also had a nice sliding catch to end the game with the tying run on second,”
Gibault head coach Andy Skaer said.
Dylan McCoy got his first win of the season on the hill, with Auggie Ward earning the save.
On Saturday, Gibault lost a doubleheader to a good Mascoutah team.
In game one, Auggie Ward made his first start of the year on the mound, throwing five strong innings with just three hits allowed.
Purcell and McFarland had two hits each, and RBIs came from McFarland, Wallin, Neff, and Dugan. Unfortunately, the Hawks lost in the end, 5-4. In game two, Gibault pitchers allowed 15 hits and just couldn’t match Mascoutah’s offensive firepower, Skaer said.
“Overall, (we) lost three games to some high quality Class 3A teams,” Skaer said.
Gibault hosted Marquette on Tuesday, and will host Valmeyer on Friday and CBC on Saturday.
Dupo goes 1-2
The Tigers (3-4) managed to sneak in a Saturday doubleheader after all the recent rainfall, losing both games to Roxana.
In the first game, Dupo took an early 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning, but promptly allowed five runs in the bottom of the first.
Dupo pitchers issued 11 walks in the first game, and that combined with three errors “pretty much gave the game away,” Dupo head coach Brad Daubach said.
Offensively, the Tigers had eight hits to keep it close, but wound up losing 12-8. Corey Biggs and Jason Smith each had two hits, Chance Hagler had an RBI single and Austin Francis had a two-RBI single.
In the second game, a Brett Aldridge double scored Hagler, giving the Tigers an early lead. But Dupo gave the momentum away again on an error, and Roxana capitalized. Jake Williams hit a sacrifice fly in the fifth inning to give Dupo the lead again at 2-1, but Roxana scored three in the bottom of the fifth and the Tiger bats went silent from there on in a 4-2 loss.
“I felt like we were ready offensively, but for some reason our pitchers were not trusting the defense behind them and walks played a crucial part all day long,” Daubach said.
The Tigers kicked off conference play with an 8-5 win against New Athens Tuesday and will play Chester on Wednesday, Marissa on Thursday and Madison on Friday.
“Conference begins and I hope we can get off to a great start,” Daubach said. “I think it’s going to come down to us, New Athens and Lebanon at the end of the day so we need to get a ‘W’ in our first test of the year.”
Pirates, ‘Dogs rained out
Rain kept the Pirates (2-6) off the field last week, but the team was hopeful to get back at it this week with games against Steeleville on Tuesday, at Lebanon on Thursday, at Gibault on Friday and at Althoff on Saturday.
Waterloo (4-0-1) hasn’t played since last Monday due to rain, but the ‘Dogs are eager to take the field at home Wednesday against Alton and Saturday against CBC.