EAGLEVILLE, Mo. — Northeast Nodaway went into Wednesday's continuation of their sectional game that they would need to come out firing after the game was delayed Monday in the middle of the sixth with the Shamrocks leading 3-1.
Bluejay senior Chet Spire did come out hot on the mound after a four-pitch walk to begin the bottom of the sixth, he settled in with a three-pitch strikeout of Matthew Heintz and another strikeout of Logan Huitt. He then got leadoff hitter Grant Claycomb to ground out to first base.
Claycomb, the North Harrison ace, got the final inning on the mound for the Shamrocks, but junior Spencer Gray led of the top of the seventh with a single to left field. Claycomb induced a double-play from Maverick Price.
The Bluejays continued to fight with Auston Pride reaching on an error and Chace Atkins hitting an infield single. The season ended on a Ben Boswell pop-out to shortstop.
Northeast Nodaway out-hit North Harrison 8-3, but stranded 15 baserunners.
The Shamrocks will now play La Plata in the state quarterfinals on Thursday. The Bluejays end the season with a 12-2 record.
(Below is the recap of Monday's action, which appeared in Thursday's edition of the Maryville Forum)
Monday's action started off well for the Jays with freshman Ben Boswell — filling in for injured All-State shortstop and lead-off hitter Spencer Weir — worked a walk to lead off the top of the first. After he stole second, Boswell came around to score on a one-out hit by Spire to give the Bluejays a 1-0 advantage.
Junior Ethan Adwell took things from there on the mound as he breezed through his first trip through the Shamrock order. Adwell recorded five strikeouts and allowed just one baserunner — on a bloop single — to get through the first two and two-thirds innings.
“We got everything out of Ethan that we needed to get out of Ethan,” Proffitt said. “He did his job and defensively, we made plays that didn't help him out.”
Things immediately got tougher for Adwell with Claycomb doubling and Brett Emig being hit by a pitch. Logan Craig followed with a single to center field which got by Reed McIntyre and allowed two runs to score.
The Shamrock lead stayed at 2-1 with the Bluejays failing to capitalize on several chances against North Harrison reliever Tyler Lundy.
“I think it all comes down to how how many runners we've left on base,” Proffitt said. “That is the whole name of the game right now, we are probably at like 15.”
Proffitt wasn't far off. Through six innings, they had stranded 13 runners.
In the third inning, Lundy came in with the bases loaded and two outs, but was able to escape the inning with a strikeout of Spencer Gray. In the fourth inning, a single by Levi Boulting loaded the bases again with two outs, but Spire grounded out to third to end the inning.
In the fifth inning, the Jays had two on with one out, but a pop-out by Maverick Price and a strikeout by Auston Pride ended the threat. In the sixth, they loaded the bases again with two outs, but McIntyre grounded out to first base.
North Harrison's offense added an insurance run in the fifth inning with the Jays struggling to field the ball. An error by Boulting allowed the leadoff hitter to reach and Adwell hit Claycomb with a pitch. Spire came in in relief to strike out Emig, but an error from Boswell allowed a run to score before two more strikeouts ended the inning.
“We have to pick them (our pitchers) up and we have not done that the last few games,” Proffitt said of the errors. “We have to do a better job of it. And we will.”
Adwell's final pitching line included four innings with three hits, one walk, seven strikeouts and two runs allowed.