In the first tournament of the young season, the Jackson baseball team won the Willard Tournament in dominant fashion as the Indians outscored its three opponents by a combined total of 42-9.
Two of these teams are in the MHSBCA preseason rankings in Class 5 No. 1 Willard (4-1) and Class 6 No. 7 Kickapoo (4-2). The currently unranked Class 6 Jackson Indians (4-0) also faced fellow unranked class member Republic (3-4).
Willard won the Class 5 State Championship last season, but the Indians handled them by nine runs at 11-2. Sophomore John Paul Sauer picked up the win on the mound with eight strikeouts and didn’t allow a single run through four innings.
Offensively, Jackson was led by junior right fielder Caden Bogenpohl as he finished with a team-high three hits and three runs scored off five at bats. Junior first baseman Clayton Ernst paced him with two hits and two runs of his own.
The Indians also beat ranked Kickapoo by nine runs at 15-6 as Bogenpohl and fellow junior outfielder Baden Hackworth each drove in four runs off a combined five hits.
Juniors shortstop Henley Parker, third baseman Quinton Borders and center fielder Steven Schneider each scored a team-high three runs versus Kickapoo.
On top of his day at the plate, Bogenpohl picked up the win on the mound as he recorded eight strikeouts through five innings.
Jackson picked up its biggest win of the season yet with a 16-1 route of Republic, where Borders finished with two hits, two runs scored and three runs batted in. Hackworth also had two RBIs, while Parker had three runs and two hits.
The game only went four innings as senior pitcher Cayden Drum earned the victory as he struck out a total of nine batters.