JOPLIN, Mo. – The Mineral Area baseball team remains situated in the top half of Region 16, but the offense slumped in a quick two-and-done exit from the postseason tournament.
The Cardinals mustered six hits against Jefferson hurler Jacob Roettgen on Friday, an improvement from the one night earlier, but were ousted 6-1 by the Vikings in an elimination game.
Colby Ott tagged a tiebreaking solo home run in the third inning while Cole Iantomasi singled twice to help Jefferson (32-21) advanced to another contest on Friday evening.
Mineral Area (35-22) grabbed a 1-0 lead when Justin Carinci singled, Liam Bushey was hit by a pitch, and Jarai Bolden followed a sacrifice bunt by Ruendrick Piternella with a sacrifice fly.
The Vikings pulled even in the home half of the first on a ground out by Jack Matousek, and Ott took MAC starter Ryker Walton deep for a 2-1 lead that would not be relinquished.
Roettgen pitched a complete game with eight strikeouts and one walk allowed for the win. He benefited from double plays in the second and fifth inning, and retired his last eight batters in succession.
Alonzo Zuniga doubled while Piternella, Jack Dunn, Kaleb Lemos and Antoine Tremblay each singled for the Cardinals, who collectively notched one hit in the previous round against Crowder.
Jefferson extended a 3-1 lead by three runs on one swing in the sixth as No. 9 batter Hunter Sherman ripped a two-RBI triple and scored when the cutoff throw bounced into the third-base dugout.
Walton yielded six runs, five earned, on four hits with 10 strikeouts over 5 2/3 innings. He walked two batters and hit three others.
Bryce Morgan worked two scoreless innings of relief, and Carter Rees retired his only batter with one pitch on a ground ball.
Crowder 10, Mineral Area 0
JOPLIN, Mo. – Crowder pounded five home runs in six innings, and dispatched Mineral Area from the Region 16 tournament winner’s bracket with a 10-0 thumping on Thursday evening.
Josh Livingston and Joey Morton each belted their second homers of the day off reliever Eddie Friedel as the fifth-ranked Roughriders invoked the 10-run mercy rule.
Mineral Area was conversely stifled at the plate by Crowder ace Riely Hunsaker, who faced one batter over the minimum and allowed only two to reach base while striking out two.
Liam Bushey singled for the lone hit against Hunsaker, and later walked. He was erased on a double play in the opening frame as Roughriders shortstop Garrett Long was perfect on eight defensive chances.
Cardinals right-hander Ray Ochoa saw his string of quality starts snapped once Crowder (48-11) batted around and jumped ahead 3-0 on a three-run blast by Morton.
Livingston launched a solo shot in the second inning, and three MAC errors preceded a three-run homer by Kolton Reynolds that chased Ochoa and made it 8-0 in the third.
Livingston had a team-high three hits, Cole Kitchens singled twice, and Tyler Favretto doubled with two walks in the victory.
Dylan Farley retired three of his four batters faced, and Grant Nicholson worked two scoreless innings out of the Mineral Area bullpen.