CHAFFEE - The Sikeston Bulldogs baseball team advanced to the semifinal round of the SEMO Conference Tournament with a 13-0, five-inning victory against Chaffee on Saturday at Harmon Field.
Two Red Devil errors in the first inning led to a five-run lead for the Bulldogs and the rout was on.
The Bulldogs (16-1) tacked on six more runs in the second inning to lead 11-0 after two.
"They made a couple errors early and then we got about three two-out hits," said Sikeston head coach Kevin Self. "From that point on it we were going to hit it. They got back on their heels and things started going our way."
Scotty Keenan provided the big blow in the first inning with a two-run triple.
Sophomore Cullen DeHart followed up with a run-scoring double, and sophomore Richard Landers plated him with a single.
It was more than enough for DeHart on the mound. He threw three innings of shutout ball, allowing four hits. He struck out two and walked one.
Bryce Wibbenmeyer retired the final six batters in the final two innings.
"Cullen had to go all the way to Columbia," said Self. "He had a band deal this morning at 10 o'clock and he flew to get here. I think he had some jet-lag from the start, but once he got command, he looked pretty strong in that third inning. I wanted to get Bryce some work too, that way they'll both be fresh if we need them Monday or Tuesday."
The Bulldogs will play Poplar Bluff tonight at Capaha Field at 7 p.m.
The shutout of Chaffee on Saturday was a welcome start in the tournament for the Bulldogs, who have needed late-inning rallies to advance the previous two years.
"The last two years we've had tough games," said Self. "Two years ago Kelly had us down 8-2 and we came back to win that one, and last year we got behind against Cape and we had to come back on them. This is what we wanted. Everybody got to play and contribute and we got to save some pitching."
Sikeston collected 10 hits in the game. Luke Jackson was the only player with two hits for the Bulldogs. He also had an RBI and a run scored.
Keenan, Nathan Eaves and Drew Lawrence each had two RBIs.
"We didn't set the tone very well," said Chaffee head coach Brian Horrell. "(Errors have) been our nemesis all year and it's going to continue until we decide to put our hardhats on and go back to work. Anytime that stuff happens, good teams will really feed off that. Sikeston took it to us after that. To beat a team like Sikeston, you've got to give them three outs in an inning at best, and hope everything else goes just right."
Brent Thomason suffered the loss in 1 2/3 innings. He allowed 11 runs, only two earned, off five hits and three walks.
Earlier in the day, Chaffee (8-8) defeated Kelly 4-2. The Red Devils plated three runs in the fifth inning to put the game away.
Thomason led the way with two hits, including a double, an RBI, and a run. Others were Brandon Davis (1-3), James Reischman (1-3), Zac Horman (2 runs), Sam Burnett (1-3, RBI), Ron Coomer (run) and Korey Chapman (double, RBI).
Horman picked up the win, throwing all seven innings and allowing five hits. He struck out eight.
Kelly's Major Burger took the loss.
Burger also went 1-3 with a run. Others were Kendal Deason (2-3, RBI), Jordan Proctor (RBI), Todd Brucker (1-2) and Caleb Daughtee (1-3).