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Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014

Sikeston powers past NMCC

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

(Photo)
Pitcher Ross Meredith catches a pop up while third baseman Richard Landers looks on.
SIKESTON - The Sikeston Bulldogs baseball team put on a power display to remember on Monday afternoon at VFW Stadium in the first round of the Class 3, District 1 Tournament

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In a 12-2, five inning victory against New Madrid County Central, the Bulldogs clubbed three titanic home runs to advance to the district semifinals.

Sikeston will play the winner of the Fredericktown-Perryville game, which was rained out immediately following the Bulldogs' game on Monday.

That game will be made up today at 4 p.m. Notre Dame and Doniphan, which was also rained out, will be played today at 2 p.m.

Barring further weather snags, Sikeston will play Wednesday at 4 p.m. at Dexter's East City Park.

In another district game, Dexter came from behind to defeat Kennett 3-2. The Bearcats will play the Notre Dame-Doniphan winner Wednesday at 6 p.m.

In Monday's game, which was moved to Sikeston after rains canceled Saturday's opening district games, the Bulldogs saw Jacob Priday and Blake DeWitt crush three tape-measure home runs.

Priday's first shot was a mammoth blast over the 390-foot sign in centerfield to give the Bulldogs a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the first inning.

After NMCC (7-11) cut the lead to 3-2 with run in the top of the second, Priday added another long blast with a two-run shot to centerfield to make it 5-2.

The Bulldogs (22-1) extended the lead to 6-2 when J.R. Bizzell scored from second on a wild pitch, just getting under pitcher Jordan Kimball's tag.

Seconds later, Lance Rhodes ripped a double off the left field fence to bring home another run to lead 7-2.

Kimball then walked DeWitt and Priday back-to-back, which set up a sacrifice fly by Nathan Eaves to bring home Rhodes to make it 8-2.

Sikeston closed out the game by 10-run rule in the bottom of the fifth. Rhodes added another double off the left field fence to bring home two runs.

With a base open, Kimball decided to pitch to DeWitt. With two outs, DeWitt unloaded a bomb to centerfield that cleared the street, landing in the parking lot to end the game.

"You can't just keep putting kids on bases," said NMCC head coach John Jones. "Sometimes you just have to gut up and go after them. Jordan really wanted this kid and didn't want to intentionally walk him."

Kimball entered the game with a 1.22 earned run average, including a 1-0 loss to Sikeston back in the SEMO Conference Tournament.

But the sophomore allowed 12 runs (nine earned) off eight hits in 4 2/3 innings on Monday. He struck out five and walked six.

Remembering the 1-0 game earlier this month, Sikeston head coach Kevin Self was leery of Kimball and the Eagles.

"That was a scary game," said Self. "With Kimball coming in, I knew what kind of stuff he had. He threw the ball well and threw it hard. He's got good stuff. He's got as good a stuff as anybody we've seen and as much pop as anybody we've seen all year."

But Kimball was out-dueled by Sikeston's Ross Merideth, who was the winning pitcher in five innings of work. He junior allowed just two hits and two unearned runs. He struck out five and walked none.

Kimball and Ben Pyles had the Eagles' only hits.

Sikeston got two hits each out of Rhodes, DeWitt and Priday.

After the game, Self was still amazed at the monstrous home runs his players hit.

"If you look at (Priday's) home runs, he's got six and four of them have been over that 390 sign," said Self. "They haven't been cheap -- he has hit some shots. And the ball Blake hit was way out of there. Maybe one of the hardest balls hit was the one hit off the wall by Lance. My gosh, that was a shot. He hit it on the screws."

Priday finished with five RBIs. Rhodes had three RBIs and three runs. DeWitt had two RBIs and three runs.

"We did what we could do," said Jones. "Jordan threw well, but he got behind in some spots and had to come to them. When you have to come from behind you're going to pay for it sometimes. We played Sikeston three times this year and gave them a good ballgame once. The longball got us today. We came to a bear hunt with a switch."

The Bulldogs didn't look sharp in the first couple innings as they committed three errors, including two by the normally sure-handed DeWitt.

But the pitching of Merideth, who sat down the Eagles' final 10 batters in order, overcame the defensive miscues.

"I hope Sikeston takes it all this year," said Jones.

"They're due. They've been there but have come away without it. I hope this is the year they bring the big one home."

NMCC will graduate eight seniors.

"We had a lot of fun this year, especially the last third of the year when we started playing more as a team," said Jones.

DEXTER - The Dexter Bearcats overcame a 2-1 sixth inning deficit to defeat the Indians 3-2.

Dexter's Garrett Williams provided the heroics with a walk-off single in the bottom of the seventh.

The rally started when Josey Roper led off with a leadoff walk. Courtesy runner Dusty Barker then stole second and eventually came around to score on Williams' base hit just inside the right field line.

Kennett (10-14) took the lead on a two-run home run by Ryne Branum with one out in the top of the sixth over the left centerfield fence.

The Bearcats tied the score at 2-2 when Josh Miller doubled and scored on a two-out, RBI-single by Aaron Mathis.

Miller was the winning pitcher, throwing all seven innings and allowing two runs off five hits. He struck out five and walked one.

Branum was the loser in 1 2/3 innings of relief. Ben Foster started for Kennett and got the no-decision.

Dexter (13-6) had eight hits. Mathis and Tyler Grovenor led the way with two hits each.