PARK HILLS – The Mineral Area baseball team dropped the first game of a doubleheader against Jefferson 4-3 on Thursday.
Jefferson starter Jason Rackers pitched a complete game in the victory. He struck out seven and allowed three runs on five hits.
Matt Turino doubled to right field with one out to in the first inning, which gave Jefferson its first base runner of the game.
Following a walk to Grant Wood, Nick Hagedorn ripped a RBI single between first and second for a 1-0 advantage.
A leadoff walk to Riley Perks came back to bite Rackers in the second inning when German Sepulveda connected for a tying single.
Blakeney Kearbey got the starting nod for the Cardinals, but ran into trouble during a second trip through the lineup. He struck out four, but walked seven and allowed four runs over 3 1/3 innings of work.
Turino drove his second double of the day to right field, which preceded walks to Wood and Dalton Doyle. Jarrett Newell delivered a two-run single to right-center field with one out, driving in both Turino and Wood.
Doyle crossed the plate two batters later on a sacrifice fly by Matt Dunham, widening the Jefferson margin to 4-1.
Turino paced the Vikings with two hits, and reached base three times. Wood drew four of the nine walks issued by MAC hurlers.
Dillon Thomas doubled home Perks in the fourth, cutting the deficit to 4-2. Perks led off the frame with a double.
Thomas and Sepulveda each had a hit and RBI, while Dawkins and Liam Hicks added hits to the Cardinals' effort.
Hicks doubled in the fifth, and brought in Caleb Feuerstake to bring the Cardinals within one run.
Rackers went to work after the double, however, and retired nine of the next 10 batters to claim his 11th win of the season.
Cole Allen worked the final 3 2/3 innings for the Cardinals, and struck out six. He walked two batters, but allowed no hits to keep Mineral Area close.
Jefferson batted around in the fifth inning, and brought in eight runs to gain a commanding 9-1 margin in game two.
Brad Willis opened the inning with a walkm and was followed by a single from Dunham. Pate Fullerton and Turino brought them in with RBI hits.
A one-out triple by Hagedorn plated Turino and Wood to extend the margin, and chased MAC starter Parker Stidham, who allowed seven runs on eight hits and struck out six over 4 1/3 innings.
Matt McGilvray relieved Stidham and immediately allowed a two-run home run to Doyle. Dunham doubled for his second hit of the fifth inning to score Newell.
Thomas scored Mineral Area’s first run when Sepulveda bounced back to the pitcher, who fired home too late to retire Thomas in the second inning.
Perks pulled a double to right field that scored Dawkins and Hicks to shrink the daunting deficit to 9-4.
Tommy van de Sanden, Anyelo Marte, and Thomas added singles for the Cardinals.
Turino was brought in as the initial run of the second game when Hagedorn singled to right-center field.
Turino led the Vikings by going 3-for-4 with three runs scored and two RBI. Hagedorn singled him home to being the scoring.
Hagedorn, Newell, Dunham and Fullerton had multi-hit performances, while Doyle and Willis added hits.
Jefferson added three runs in the eighth, two of which occurred because of errors. Turino capped the rally with an RBI single.
The four-game series continues Friday in Hillsboro, Mo.