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Jackson baseball wins fourth game in a row with 5-4 thriller over Vianney

Jackson baseball junior Cooper Rhodes, right, celebrates with junior Lance Wilson after scoring a run in the Indians 5-4 win over Vianney last Wednesday at home. Photo by Jay Forness

After suffering a 15-1 loss to Class 5 Farmington (9-6) back on March 27, the Jackson baseball team (9-2) has now rattled off four wins in a row with its most recent being just by one run.

This was against fellow Class 6 opponent Vianney (6-6) as the Indians won via a walk-off single by junior first baseman Lance Wilson in the bottom of the seventh and final inning.

Off what was his lone hit of the day, Lance drove in fellow junior left fielder Cooper Rhodes for the game-winning run to lead Jackson to a 5-4 win over the Griffins.

This was Rhodes’ second run of the contest as he scored all the way back in the bottom of the first inning as well, that time off a double by senior shortstop Jack Glency.

To get on base, Rhodes grounded to into a fielder’s choice but was able to reach second base on the play since Vianney’s pitcher threw out senior Waylon Hale at third instead of getting out Cooper.

The Indians even had a player knock the ball out of the park in the bottom of the fourth inning as senior Garrison Brown hit a two-run homer over the right-field wall to send junior Peyton Kight and himself home to take a 4-3 lead.

With it being a one-run outcome, every single score was crucial as Kight also scored another run in the contest back in the second inning. This came off a triple by Hale after he was thrown out at third in the previous inning to tie the game 2-2.

Vianney scored one run in each of the first three innings to take a 3-2 lead until the bottom of the fourth when Harrison hit his two-run bomb. The Griffins tied it up in the following inning off a one-run double.

The Indians went through three pitchers in the contest as junior Cole Koeberl picked up the win throwing three innings with six strikeouts and two earned runs. Senior Adrian Fox and sophomore Ryan Turlington pitched in relief as the both threw two innings as Fox picked up a strikeout, while Turlington only allowed one hit.

Along with its win over Vianney, Jackson remained dominant against SEMO Conference opponents with a 16-1 home route over Notre Dame (6-4) last Tuesday.

This game also marked the season debut of 2023 all-state pitcher senior John-Paul Sauer, who had been out for several months with an injury he suffered during preseason football. Sauer only threw two innings against the Bulldogs, but he still managed to strike out four of the six battters he faced while only having 27 pitches.

Coming in relief for John-Paul were senior Brynson Garcia and junior Benjamin Dambach. Garcia nearly matched Sauer’s strikeout total with three of his own in just one inning.

While seven Indians scored multiple runs offensively, it was Wilson and sophomore catcher Drew Parsons coming up big in their respective at bats. Parsons recorded a three-run triple in the bottom of the first inning to send home Glency, Wilson and senior right fielder Caleb Nenninger.

Wilson followed that up in the second with a two-run single off a line drive to right field for Glency and senior third baseman Owen Osborne to score.

Kight also had a triple in the contest to drive in one runner in the third, which was Wilson. Glency ended the game off a ground ball for an error, which sent Hale home for the 16th and final run.

Jackson also picked up a Class 6 District 1 victory last week with a 11-1 over Oakville (5-6) on April 1 at home.

Earning the win for the Indians pitching staff was veteran senior Carson McDaniel, who threw five innings and recorded five strikeouts while allowing zero earned runs. Parsons pitched in relief for McDaniel as he struck out two batters in only one inning while allowing no hits or runs.

Offensively, three Indians recorded two or more hits as junior first baseman Drake Weber came up with three, while Nenninger and sophomore catcher Carson Beltz each had two.

Even though he only had one hit against Oakville, Brown recorded another two-run home run on the week to give Jackson a 6-1 lead in the bottom of the fifth.

This weekend, the Indians will face out-of-state opponents Lyon County (Kentucky), Mount Vernon (Illinois), Warren East (Kentucky) and lastly Marion (Illinois).

Nick McNeal covers high school sports, college sports and community events for The Cash-Book Journal. He graduated from Southeast Missouri State University with a degree in multimedia journalism and has lived in Cape Girardeau County for the past five years. He can be reached at cbjsports@socket. net.

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