Versailles and Macks Creek baseball fall on different sides of dramatic district openers
Chamberlin delivers walk-off victory in district opener for Versailles
Versailles senior Ty Chamberlin decided he wanted to play baseball a little longer for the Tigers.
With an opportunity to drive in the winning run, he did not disappoint as his hit big hit completed a late rally in a 4-3 win over Knob Noster in the opening round of the Class 4 District 13 Tournament. The win puts the second-seeded Tigers in the district championship Wednesday night against top-seeded Host Pleasant Hill.
Knob Noster, the No. 3 team in the district, grabbed an early 2-0 lead with a pair of runs in the second inning before the Tigers gained a run back in the fourth. The Panthers went up 3-1 in the fifth and were just three outs away from ending the season for Versailles when the Tigers rallied with a trio of runs in the seventh to win it.
“I told the boys before the seventh to look for pitches you can hit out of the park and swing that way,” Versailles coach Jason Ollison remarked. “Cole Wilson did just that to start it off, Justin Hamrick had a good at-bat to draw a walk and the biggest at-bat of the inning was Payton Silvey laying down a perfect sacrifice bunt to put the guys in scoring position. Tyrus Ollison made a great adjustment to his previous at-bats and barreled one up good to score two runners. Then, we were fortunate with a mishandled run down and Ty calmly came up and calmly hit a line drive to left to win it.”
In doing so, he put Versailles in a district championship for only the second time in program history, according to the head coach. The other appearance came in 2003.
“It was crazy. Our guys are starting to understand that you just keep making adjustments at the plate, keep the game close defensively and anything can happen,” the coach stated. “As long as we have outs, we have a chance.”
Ollison led Versailles with a pair of RBIs and he and Wilson provided the team’s only other two hits besides Chamberlin.
On the mound, Chamberlin went six innings and allowed one earned run while striking out six and walking three batters. Josh Leake pitched an inning and was tagged for a hit and a walk while striking out a batter.
The Tigers (12-15) will meet Pleasant Hill (17-4) for the championship at 6:30 p.m.
Macks Creek falls in extra innings to Tuscumbia in district opener
It was a tough way to see the season come to an end.
Macks Creek, the fourth seed in the Class 1 District 8 Tournament, met No. 5 Tuscumbia on the turf field at Versailles to overcome the rain and the Lions rallied late to send the game to extra innings where they pulled off a 3-2 win in eight innings.
“We struggled to execute a few times with runners on and made some costly errors later in the game, Macks Creek coach Jason Trusty said of a game originally scheduled to be played in St. Elizabeth before the weather played a factor. “We were able to push some runs across tonight and get some baserunners, but we just couldn’t push enough in.”
The Pirates got the scoring started in the first with a single tally before Tuscumbia tied it in the third and a run in the fifth gave Macks Creek the advantage and put the Pirates on the brink of victory before the Lions tied it in the seventh on an overthrow to third base. Another error on a pickoff attempt in the eighth allowed the Lions to get ahead for good.
Grant English (4-6) pitched a complete game and allowed three unearned runs over eight innings while striking out 15, walking a batter and allowing a trio of hits. Macks Creek collected five hits offensively with English, Trever Smith, Tanner Smith, Hunter Harris and Kyler Gabriel all collecting a hit. Trever and Tanner each delivered an RBI for the Pirates.
Tuscumbia advances to take on top seed St. Elizabeth in the district semifinals and Macks Creek ends the season at 6-13.
Michael Losch is the Sports Editor at the Lake Sun. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 573-346-2132