Valmeyer Jr. Legion advances to state

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Pictured is the Valmeyer Post 901 Junior Legion baseball squad after winning the Fifth Division Tournament at Borsch Park on Monday, front row, from left, Gavin Rau, Jacob Brown, Noah Gantner, Evan Dressel, Elijah Miller, Chase Snyder and Rowan Schilling; back row Coach Dave Lucht, Lucas Schwartzkopf, Chase Lucht, Luke Blackwell, Dylan Minemann, Jake Killy, Landon Roy, Coach Corey Blackwell and Coach Greg Reinhardt. Not pictured:  Kye Holbrook, Jake Coats, Xavier Smither and Gavin Baldwin.

With an 8-1 victory over Breese at Borsch Park on Monday night, the Valmeyer Post 901 Junior Legion baseball squad won the Fifth Division Tournament title and punched its ticket to the Illinois Junior American Legion State Tournament taking place this weekend in Trenton. 

It was the program’s first division championship. 

Post 901 leadoff hitter Elijah Miller went 1-for-2 with a triple and three runs scored. Chase Lucht allowed one unearned run over six solid innings pitched for the mound victory.

Valmeyer (19-7) will open state tourney play at 2:30 p.m. Thursday against Jerseyville Post 492. With a win, Valmeyer would face Wheaton Post 76 at 1:30 p.m. Friday. With a loss, Valmeyer would play at 4 p.m. Friday.

Last Wednesday, Valmeyer opened Fifth Division tourney play in Steeleville with a 5-1 victory over Trenton. Luke Blackwell struck out eight over four innings of one-hit baseball. 

Landon Roy went 2-for-3 with two RBIs and Miller went 2-for-3 with an RBI and two stolen bases. Lucht also added two hits.

Lucht and Miller combined to pitch three solid innings in relief to secure the victory for Post 901.

Next up was a battle against tourney host Steeleville, which Valmeyer won 16-12. 

On a hot day for baseball, Valmeyer won 12-2 over Alton in six innings Saturday to advance to the division championship. 

Dylan Minemann struck out 11 over five innings and Kye Holbrook pitched a scoreless sixth. 

Minemann also paced the offensive attack with two hits and two RBIs. Lucas Schwartzkopf went 3-for-4 with a triple and Chase Snyder added two hits and two RBIs. 

Jacob Brown added a two-RBI double. 

Due to heavy rain encountered during Sunday’s match between Breese and Alton for the right to face Valmeyer in the tourney final, that game resumed Monday at Borsch Park in Valmeyer. 

Breese survived that showdown to set up a match with Valmeyer. 

In addition to its first division title, Valmeyer won the District 22 tourney title and went a perfect 10-0 in league play this summer.

Other teams competing in the double-elimination state tournament at Trenton City Park this weekend include Trenton Post 778, Danville Post 210 and Palos Post 1993. 

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