BONNE TERRE — Jake Cavins lifted a slumping lineup with a decisive two-run single in the sixth inning, and the Bonne Terre Senior Legion squad edged district opponent Rock Memorial 3-2 on Monday night.
Andy Summers and Zach Hibbits reached base three times apiece, and Pete Grindel finished 1-for-2 with an important squeeze bunt for the Warriors (3-1), who netted just four hits overall.
Jordan Thompson pitched around six walks and completed six innings for the win, allowing one run on four hits. He was aided defensively by one double play, and Cody Huff scooped several low throws at first base.
Rock Memorial committed four errors and wasted numerous scoring chances with 14 stranded runners. The visitors drew lead-off walks in the final three innings, and nearly pulled even during the ninth.
Cavins plunked Charles Rapp to force home Brent Engelbach after Joe Scott prolonged the action with an infield hit, but Nick Baker grounded back to the mound for the final out. Cavins tallied four strikeouts while notching the save.
Rock Memorial grabbed the early lead on three straight hits in the third inning. Engelbach advanced from first to third when Mike Wingbermuehle singled to left-center, and raced home when a throw trickled away.
Starting pitcher Ethan Schlechte followed with a double before being stranded, and had a strong 3-for-4 night at the plate. Schlechte fanned four batters over six innings, and yielded an unearned run in the fourth.
Two fielding errors loaded the bases for the Warriors after Tyler Stacy drew a lead-off walk, and Grindel dropped down an excellent bunt to score Huff for a 1-1 tie.
Huff was injured during a collision that began a controversial fifth. Engelbach was ruled safe when Huff fell to the ground along with the baseball, but Bonne Terre coaches argued that the putout had already been made.
Thompson walked back-to-back hitters with one out, but escaped the jam when Cavins started a double play from the shortstop position. Rock Memorial fans contested the pivotal play, as batter Joe Scott appeared to have easily beaten the throw to first.
Schlechte elected to challenge Cavins in the sixth with two outs and first base open, and the decision proved costly when Cavins smashed a drive back through the middle, allowing both Summers and Grindel to cross the plate.
The Warriors also received singles from Nick Baker and Bryan Krause, and will travel to Ste. Genevieve tonight for a rematch of last year’s Junior Legion district championship.
Rock Memorial 001 000 001 – 2 7 4
Bonne Terre 000 102 00x – 3 4 2
WP – Thompson 6i 1r 1er 4h 2k 6bb.
LP – Schlechte 6i 3r 2er 3h 4k 4bb 1hb.
SV – Cavins 3i 1r 1er 3h 4k 3bb 1hb.
Rock Memorial – Schlechte 3-4, Engelbach 1-3, Baker 1-3, Scott 1-4, Wingbermuehle 1-5. 2b – Schlechte.
Bonne Terre – Grindel 1-2, Baker 1-2, Krause 1-3, Cavins 1-5.