Jefferson baseball grabs share of RVC North title
EVANSVILLE Jefferson High is the Rock Valley North baseball champion.
The Eagles clinched at least a share of the conference championship Thursday.
Andy Brahier pitched into the seventh and got all the support he needed thanks to a seven-run fifth inning as Jefferson coasted past Evansville, 9-2.
Jefferson finished the Rock North with a 14-2 record and will win the title outright if Edgerton (13-2) loses at home today against Orfordville Parkview.
"This team has been able, all season long, put a big number on the board and today was no different," Jefferson coach Greg Fetherston said of the seven-run outburst in the fifth. "Good teams find a way and that's what we've done.
"And Andy is probably the front-runner for Player of the Year in our conference and he showed why today. We would've loved to have gotten him a complete game, but his pitch count got up there a little bit at the end."
Evansville, which lost to second-ranked Jefferson for the second time in three days, took a 1-0 lead in the second. The Eagles tied the game in the fourth on Nick Schrader's RBI double before blowing the game open with seven runs in the fifth. Jefferson had only three hits in the fifth but took advantage of three Evansville errors.
"The difference in the game was our inability to execute and their ability to do just that," Evansville coach Brian Cashore said. "We took ourselves out of an inning with a baserunning mistake where we would've had runners on second and third with one out and our No. 3 and 4 hitters coming up.
"We played four innings against the second-ranked team in the state where we were ahead 1-0 and had a chance to go ahead 2- or 3-0. It just got away from us after that."
Brahier kept the Blue Devils off balance with a mix of fastball and breaking pitches. The right-hander allowed eight hits and struck out four.
Heath Renz finished with three hits for Jefferson and Nick Schrader had two hits and two RBI.
Ryan Cashore suffered the loss. The junior right-hander struck out eight but battled control problems throughout—hitting three batters and walking two.
JEFFERSON 9, EVANSVILLE 2
Jefferson 000 171 0—9 10 3
Evansville 010 000 1—2 8 4
Brahier, Jac. Nelson (7) and Jar. Nelson; Cashore, Carpenter (5), Watson (5) and Pinnow.
Leading hitters—Schrader (J) 2x3, Renz (J) 3x5, Rutkowski (J) 2x4. 2B—Johnson (J), Schrader (J), Brahier (J), Renz (J).
SO—Brahier (J) 4, Cashore (E) 8, Watson (E) 2. BB—Brahier 2, Cashore 2, Carpenter 1.