Juniors’ season ends in tourney semi final
After losing their opening game in the Class C Area 7 tournament, Imperial’s Junior Legion battled their way back before falling again Monday night to end their season.
The fourth-seeded juniors opened the tournament Friday, July 7 in Alma against fifth-seeded Shelton/Gibbon (S/G).
The juniors took an early 2-1 lead but gave up six runs in the middle innings and four more in the sixth to fall 11-6.
That dropped them into the consolation bracket where they faced top-seeded Bertrand/Loomis Saturday, July 8.
Imperial’s tough regular schedule proved beneficial as they ousted the top seed from the tournament, 23-12.
That advanced them to face third-seeded Bridgeport Sunday.
Bridgeport defeated sixth-seeded Kimball in their opener. However, they fell to Overton in their next game, dropping them into the consolation bracket.
A five-run first inning vaulted Imperial’s juniors to a 14-4 win earning them a shot at Overton, who came through the top bracket without a loss.
Overton kept their slate clean Monday, handing the juniors a 11-2 defeat to knock Imperial out of the tournament.
Overton was scheduled to face S/G Tuesday night.
Going into the finals unbeaten, Overton needed just one win to clinch the district title and advance to the state tournament.
Imperial went into the tournament with a 4-8 record and finish with a 6-10 season mark.
In the tournament opener, S/G got a run in the top of the first with Imperial doubling that in the bottom half of the inning.
Consecutive singles by Bryce Zuege, Trevor Peterson and Dominic Sis led to the 2-1 lead.
Over the next four innings, Bennett Bauerle was the only one to reach first—once on a single and once after be hit by a pitch. S/G pitching set down nine hitters to keep Imperial in check.
S/G added one in the third, and five in the fifth to open a commanding 7-2 lead.
They extended it to 11-2 in the top of the sixth. In the bottom half, Imperial was able to answer with two runs.
Peterson singled and Jack Bauerle reached on a walk. A double by Austin Laird brought home Peterson and Bauerle scored with Duncan Rector at the plate.
Imperial got out undamaged in the top of the seventh but could only score two more runs on a two-out rally.
Zuege and Peterson each singled. Sis brought home Zuege with a double and Peterson scored on a single by Jack Bauerle.
A 6-to-3 out by S/G ended the game, 11-6.
Rector went three and a third on the mound, giving up two runs on five hits, no walks and three strikeouts.
Peterson went an inning, giving up five on two hits and five walks.
Sis added an inning giving up three runs on three hits and three walks.
Tell Richardson went one and two-third to finish, giving up just one run on three hits and two walks agains one strikeout.
Imperial kept their tournament hopes intact with a 23-12 win over Bertrand/Loomis (B/R).
In the top of the first, Imperial scored four runs on hits by Zuege and Sis, coupled with a pair of walks.
After giving up a run in the bottom of the first, Imperial scored four more runs for an 8-1 lead.
Zuege, Peterson and Sis hit consecutive singles, along with another by J. Bauerle.
Both teams added a pair in the third with Britt Gockley and Bennett Bauerle both scoring after singles by Bauerle and Zuege.
The juniors added another five in the top of the fourth with six free passes along with singles by Peterson and Sis.
B/L rallied in the bottom of the fourth with seven runs but still trailed the juniors 15-10.
Imperial added eight more insurance runs in the top of the fifth en route to the 23-12 win.
Peterson doubled and Sis, Richardson, Rector, Gockley and Zuege all singled.
Laird went three and a third on the mound, giving up just three runs on six hits one walk and four strikeouts.
Richardson went one and a third, giving up nine runs on nine hits, three walks and a strikeout. Jack Bauerle finished up the fifth.
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