Knights fall to sixth-ranked Trojans in round two of playoffs
Union holds the gates until bottom of fourth
West Marshall was feeling the tension.
Leading Union 2-1 in the bottom of the fourth inning despite not allowing a hit, the sixth-ranked Trojans were sputtering against the visiting Knights in State Center Wednesday evening.
It wasn’t until a two-run single by Trojans’ starting pitcher Owen Siegert and an RBI single from Clay Cuva that West Marshall was able to open up a gap on the scoreboard and eventually ride to a 6-1 victory against Union on July 6, in a Class 2A District 12 semifinal.
Siegert threw four innings of work and did not allow a hit. While he was scoreless through the first three innings, West Marshall was slowly building a lead at the plate.
Siegert crossed home in the bottom of the first, while Cuva was driven home in the third inning by a Kinnick Christensen single.
Entering the top of the fourth inning with a 2-0 advantage, the Trojans let things slip and allowed the Knights back into the contest, head coach Jerod Brown said.
“The [freebies] just kind of added up and we let it get away from us,” Brown said. “After the passed ball and it gets to 2-1, that can easily become 2-3 runs and get away from you, find yourself in a different game. I thought we actually stayed pretty composed there and buckled down and got the next out.”
An error, a walk and two passed balls allowed Michael Niebergall to score Union’s only run of the game. Then came the bottom of the fourth. Dru Wilder and Antonio McKinney reached base to start the inning for the Trojans. But outs from DJ Ridout and AJ Dee left West Marshall with two on and two outs.
Siegert ripped a two-run single to ease the nerves before Cuva drove him home. Later in the inning, Cuva scored when Christensen was caught in a pickle. Cuva took advantage of the chaos and beat the tag to push the Trojans’ lead to 6-1.
After this inning, Siegert was done for the day in order to stay eligible to pitch in the upcoming district final game.
Union failed to collect a hit until Danny Peterson cracked a double into the outfield with one out in the top of the seventh inning.
Union ends the season with a record of 9-23, tied for fourth with Oelwein in the North Iowa Cedar-East Conference.
The Trojans will move on to Saturday night’s district 12 championship against Williamsburg in State Center.