Facing elimination in the Junior Legion Zone tournament in Warrensburg, Missouri, Sedalia Rick Ball Ford mounted a dramatic comeback to earn their third consecutive bid to the state tournament.
After Sedalia dismissed Waverly 18-3 on Friday, Alec Luyet pitched a complete-game shutout and scored in a 2-0 victory over St. Joseph. Sedalia entered Saturday needing two wins over the Blue Springs Elks, who beat them in six on Thursday, 10-0.
Head coach Brent Hodge said the team dialed up their focus after a 10-0 opening round loss to the Elks.
“I think it just kind of kicked in, how much baseball we’ve played, and the fact that if we lose another game, we’re done,” Hodge said. “The first game, we just didn’t have a lot go our way.”
Sedalia Rick Ball Ford 7, Blue Springs Elks 0
Connor Tichenor had a no-hitter broken up with two outs in the seventh by Calib Compton in a 7-0 victory over Blue Springs Elks.
Tichenor allowed struck out and walked three each, silencing the Elks’ offense through 98 pitches. He was also productive at the plate, going 2-3 with a walk, two RBIs and two runs scored.
Corbin Reese made it 6-0 in the fourth with an RBI single to score Braiden McEachern. Sedalia took a 1-0 lead in the first on a Clayton Meyer single. He was 1-for-4 with two RBIs.
Sedalia Rick Ball Ford 12, Blue Springs Elks 11
In a back-and-forth, eight-inning marathon, Sedalia simply had the last hand on the bat. Cash Miller walked off on the Blue Springs Elks with a two-out RBI single to give Sedalia Rick Ball a 12-11 victory and a state tournament bid.
Six pitchers — Clayton Meyer, Braiden McEachern, Easton Webb, Corbin Reese, Alec Luyet and Miller – appeared for Sedalia.
Miller was awarded the win on the mound for Sedalia after recording one out to end the eighth.
Meyer started and lasted three innings, allowing six runs on seven hits. He was also 2-for-4 at thte plate, scoring three times and driving in three runs.
Sedalia trailed 10-6 before a five-run rally in the sixth inning. Blue Springs tied the game at 11 in the seventh inning.
Miller and Gunnar Creach had multi-hit games, while Nick Cashman drove in two runs on a game-tying triple in the sixth. Creach followed with an RBI single, giving Sedalia their first lead, 11-10.
With the Zone tournament title, Sedalia advances to the state tournament in Washington, Missouri. They face Glendale at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, July 21.
Alex Agueros can be reached at 660-826-1000, ext. 1483 or on Twitter @abagueros2