The bats are starting to come alive for some area high school baseball teams, with Waterloo, Gibault, Columbia and Valmeyer each scoring runs in bunches of late.
The Bulldogs, Hawks and Eagles posted big recent wins, as did the Pirates.
Columbia pulled off a dramatic 6-5 home win over conference rival Wesclin in extra innings on Tuesday.
After Wesclin had taken a 5-4 lead in the seventh, the Eagles tied it in the bottom half of the inning. A hit by Zach Mathews in the ninth inning won the game. Mathews and Brian Dougherty each had two hits in the victory.
In Valmeyer, the Pirates defeated Dupo 13-9 on Tuesday. Things looked well in hand for Valmeyer heading into the seventh, but the Tigers scored five runs in the final frame to make it interesting. Hunter Brewer smacked a home run for the Pirates, who lost 19-12 to the St. Louis Patriots in Hazelwood, Mo., on Wednesday.
Gibault (12-7) won its fifth straight game on Wednesday at Belleville East, 9-4. Ethan Shields went 2-for-5 with a home run, and four other Hawks collected two hits apiece. Trevor Davis struck out four in a complete game victory on the mound.
Waterloo (13-5) also on its fifth straight on Wednesday, 5-4 over conference rival Mascoutah. The Indians scored two runs in the top of the seventh to tie the game, but the Bulldogs battled back with a run in the bottom of the inning for a walk-off win. Kane Osterhage went 2-for-3 for the ‘Dogs.
Waterloo has won four straight following a tough 6-0 loss at Jerseyville last Wednesday. The Bulldogs blasted Collinsville on Friday, 15-1, which was followed by a doubleheader sweep at Pinckneyville and a Monday win in a slugfest at home against Civic Memorial.
An eight-run fourth inning was key in the Collinsville win. Kane Osterhage went 4-for-5, Tyler McAlister went 3-for-3 with a home run and five RBIs, and Erik Kaiser went 3-for-4 with a home run to pace a 21-hit attack.
McAlister went five strong innings for the win on the mound.
The switch-hitting Kaiser shined again on Saturday, going 2-for-3 with a home run and four RBIs in the 12-2 game one win.
Starting pitcher Ben Maurer went the distance on the mound with seven strikeouts.
In game two, Osterhage smacked three hits, including two doubles, to lead the Bulldogs to a 6-0 win. Pitchers Aaron Laskowski and Cole Kaiping held Pinckneyville to just three hits.
The offense stayed hot in a 16-12 conference win at home on Monday.
Osterhage went 4-for-4 with three stolen bases and five runs scored. Kaiser went 3-for-4 and Ryan Aycock had a 3-for-3 day.
Lefthander Corey Vogel earned the pitching win in relief for Waterloo against CM, striking out six in 3.67 innings.
“Aycock, Osterhage, Kaiser and McAlister have really kickstarted our offense lately,” Waterloo head coach Mark Vogel said. “We’ve swung the bats well. Our pitching has been up and down.”
McAlister is tied for the St. Louis area lead in home runs with four.
The ‘Dogs are 12-5 heading into a Wednesday game against Mascoutah and Friday game against Belleville East.
Gibault (11-7) has also won four in a row, including big wins last week against Okawville and Wesclin.
Dylan McCoy threw six strong innings, allowing one unearned run on five hits in a 4-3 win at Okawville on Thursday.
Chandler Purcell, Jordan McFarland and Tyler Brinkmann each had two hits in the contest.
Purcell ranks among the leaders in the St. Louis area in runs scored and RBIs.
On Friday, the Hawks won 13-4 thanks in large part to a six-run fifth inning.
“(That was) a real nice win for us,” Gibault head coach Andy Skaer said. “They are one of the top 2A teams in the area.”
McFarland led a 14-hit attack by going 4-for-5 with three RBIs, but Drew Dugan was the offensive star of the game, according to Skaer. He was 3-for-4 with four RBIs, including his first career home run in the second inning.
Trevor Davis picked up the win on the mound, allowing just one run over the last four innings.
On Monday at Ss. Peter & Paul Field, Logan Kesler shut down Cahokia with a one-hitter over five innings as the Hawks short-gamed the Comanches, 13-1.
Gibault scored seven runs in the fourth inning. Ethan Shields went 3-for-4 and Purcell, McCoy, Alec Skaer and Kyle Hannon added two hits apiece.
“Logan threw a nice game, walking no one and allowing just one hit. He threw just 53 pitches,” coach Skaer said.
Gibault plays Wednesday at Belleville East and Saturday at home against Freeburg.
Columbia (9-4) had an up-and-down week, but the offense showed plenty of promise in a 12-0 blasting of Althoff on Friday.
Cameron Touchette continued his assault on area pitching this spring, going 4-for-4 against Althoff one day after going 4-for-4 against Breese Central.
He added five RBIs on Friday, and had four stolen bases on Thursday.
Touchette is hitting .732 with 17 runs scored and 21 stolen bases so far this spring.
“Cameron continues to be a force at the plate,” Columbia head coach Keith Jany said.
JT Broshears added three hits and Blake Crawford went the distance on the mound Friday.
On Thursday, the Eagles fell 7-6 to Central in eight innings. Broshears was the hard-luck loser in relief. Lamont Read went 4-for-5 with a home run and stolen base in the loss.
Last Wednesday, Columbia bounced back from a loss the day before at Freeburg to hold on for a 6-5 win against New Athens. Ryan Gudeman went 3-for-3 with three runs scored, and freshman Andrew Hoguet picked up his first varsity win on the mound.
“Pitching has been doing well, giving us a chance to win games, but our offense continues to be inconsistent,” Jany said. “Hopefully, the offense started to get back on track during the Althoff game, where we had 15 hits.
We need to continue to get good pitching and hopefully our offense is starting to come around.”
Columbia plays at Carlyle on Thursday.
Valmeyer (10-9) went 4-2 over the past six games following a big win last Tuesday over New Athens.
The Pirates topped Marissa 9-2 on Thursday, as Easton Wallace went 4-for-4 with three RBIs. Hunter Brewer and Mark Nappier added back-to-back home runs.
On Friday, Valmeyer suffered a 1-0 defeat in eight innings at South Central. Brewer took the loss on the mound despite only allowing two hits while striking out 12.
“Definitely his best performance of the year,” Valmeyer head coach Greg Reinhardt said.
On Saturday, the Pirates beat Casey-Westfield, 5-2, and lost to Louisville North Clay, 11-1.
Zach Williams picked up the win on the mound against Casey-Westfield, and Easton Wallace was 2-for-4 with an RBI. Erickson Wallace added an RBI double.
Drew Maus had an RBI single in the loss to North Clay.
On Monday, Valmeyer won 16-6 against Wood River. Michael Chism picked up the win on the hill.
Nappier was just a single away from hitting for the cycle and had four RBIs. Brewer went 3-for-3 with three doubles hit deep into the gaps and four RBIs.
Easton Wallace leads the team in hitting at .407. Brewer leads the team in pitching with a 1.88 ERA.
The Pirates, defeated Dupo 13-9 on Tuesday and are now 5-0 in conference play.
Dupo picked up a 2-0 win against Steeleville on Thursday, as Jordan Prange was the star on the mound and at the plate. He threw a one-hitter with 11 strikeouts for the victory and also went 2-for-2 at the plate.
The Tigers (4-6) followed up that win with a 21-4 spanking of Madison on Friday. Austin Francis, Drew Kelling and Robert Seager collected two hits apiece in the victory as Dupo scored 12 runs in the first inning.
Dupo plays at Marissa on Saturday before traveling to Columbia on Monday.