SIKESTON — Ste. Genevieve made program history when it won its third overall district title and its first one since 2013 a week earlier, and the Dragons had the shot to made additional program history Wednesday afternoon.
Host Sikeston, however, didn’t let that happen.
The Dragons were held to four hits, but Bulldogs’ pitcher Tyler Gilmer didn’t allow a runner past second base, and an early outburst propelled Sikeston to a 6-0 shutout win in the Class 4 state sectionals.
“It was a great accomplishment to get to this point,” said Ste. Genevieve head coach Mike McDaniel. “At some juncture I'm hoping that a future team can overcome this hurdle, but our guys have absolutely nothing to hold their head about. They've set a record for wins during the course of the year and have only the third district championship in school history. These guys have accomplished a lot over the past four years, and it's been a pleasure to coach them.”
Sikeston had strong contact on the ball to start the game as N Self kicked off the contest with a double, and after a strong line out to right field, Jeffery Thornborough came through with a one-out single for the first run of the game. The Dragons prevented more damage on a strikeout before they caught a runner stealing second base.
Ste. Genevieve had a chance early when Grant Staffen led off the bottom of the second with a single, but a ground out and two fly outs dashed those hopes.
Things continued to turn favorably for Sikeston and difficult for the Dragons in the second inning.
The Bulldogs loaded the bases with no outs on a Noah Hicks walk, a Hayden Alcorn single and a hit by a pitch to Dylan Thornborough.
Lestyn Thompson took a 1-1 pitch to left field for an RBI single. During the play, however, the Ste. Genevieve defense misplayed the ball, and two more scored from Sikeston as Thompson made it to third. Payton Howard was plunked and stole second, and he and Thompson both scored when Jeffery Thornborough took a 1-0 pitch to left field.
The next batter grounded out, but Ste. Genevieve was unable to utilize leadoff singles by Logan Gegg and Morganthaler. The eventual final was set after the second inning.
See complete coverage in the May 29 edition.