Taking in a game at the old ball yard

By Will Johnson, Sports Editor
Posted 4/20/22

ST LOUIS — An eye-opening experience.

That is one way to describe Saturday afternoon’s high school baseball game at Busch Stadium in downtown St. Louis between Tyler Ahring’s …

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Taking in a game at the old ball yard

Posted

ST LOUIS — An eye-opening experience.

That is one way to describe Saturday afternoon’s high school baseball game at Busch Stadium in downtown St. Louis between Tyler Ahring’s Owensville Dutchmen and the Roxana (Ill.) Shells.

Grabbing an early 1-0 lead after one inning, OHS added four runs in the second and three more in the third before going on to an 11-5 victory over their opponents from across the Mississippi River.

“I’m so happy for my guys that they were able to get this opportunity,” Ahring said. “The fact that we won made it even sweeter. We were able to turn our opponents mistakes into runs and that helps you win games more often than not.”

Playing as the visiting team, Owensville got the first chance to break the scoreless tie from Busch Stadium.

Dominic Grigaitis led off with a single before Bryce Payne came in as a courtesy runner for the Dutchmen senior catcher.

After stealing second base, Payne scored on a Gavin Loague RBI double giving Owensville an early 1-0 lead.

Getting the starting nod for Owensville, senior Derek Brandt took full advantage of the opportunity to pitch off the same mound as Cardinal greats Bob Gibson and Bruce Sutter to name a few.

Brandt retired the Shells in order in the bottom of the first inning on a strikeout, line out to Logan Evans and a fly out to Loague.

Logan Evans then led off the top of the second inning with a single before a Dezmyn Moore single and a Jon Saunsaucie walk loaded the bases for Eoin Krupp.

In spite of a Krupp pop out, Grigaitis drew a walk to allow Evans to score and double the Dutchmen lead to 2-0.

At the plate with two outs, Loague lifted a fly ball to left field that was dropped by the Shells allowing Payne, Moore and Saunsaucie to score pushing the OHS lead to 5-0 after two innings.

Landon Valley started the top of the third inning by reaching on another Roxana error.

Logan Evans was then hit by a pitch before a Moore single loaded the bases Saunsaucie.

After Valley scored on a wild pitch, Saunsaucie lifted a RBI single to left field allowing Evans to score giving the orange and black a 7-0 lead.

Moore later scored on a error by the Shell catcher giving the Dutchmen an 8-0 lead entering the bottom of the third inning.

Roxana finally got on the board turning four hits and a walk into four runs cutting the Owensville lead in half to 8-4 after three innings.

Allowing four runs on four hits with a walk and three strikeouts, Brandt was relieved in the bottom of the fourth inning by Michael Steinbeck.

Retiring the side, Steinbeck gave his Dutchmen offense a chance to add to their four-run lead in the top half of the fifth inning.

Retired in order in the top of the fifth, Owensville turned back to their defense to keep their four-run lead in tact.

Taking the ball from Steinbeck, Valley took his turn as a relief pitcher for the Dutchmen in the bottom of the fifth inning.

After a single and two walks loaded the bases, Valley was able to tag out a Shell base runner trying to steal home ending the frame with the bases full of Shells.

Held scoreless for the previous two innings, Owensville was finally able to get one of the runs back that they gave up in the bottom of the third inning.

Austin Long started the scoring threat with a one-out single to right field before advancing to second base on a Wyatt Kramme single also with one out.

Loague then collected his second hit of the game with a single that moved Long to third while Kramme was out trying to advance to second base.

During Steinbeck’s latest at bat, Long scored on a passed ball giving the Dutchmen a 9-4 lead going to the bottom of the sixth inning.

Another inning meant another pitcher for the Dutchmen.

Moore came on to pitch the bottom of the sixth.

Walking a batter before hitting another, Moore then allowed a single with one out loading the bases.

With a little help from his friends on defense, Moore got out of the jam thanks to outfield catches by Valley and Brandt to end a possible scoring threat by the Shells.

Looking for more insurance tallies in the top of the seventh inning, Valley and Logan Evans started the inning with back-to-back singles.

Moore drove in Valley with a RBI single moving the Dutchmen into double digits on the scoreboard.

Krupp then ended the scoring with a one-out RBI single to left field scoring Evans extending the Owensville lead to 11-4.

Saunsaucie took over pitching duties from Valley in the bottom of the seventh inning allowing a run on two hits.

Elias Medlock recorded Owensville’s final base hit of the game on a two-out single through the left side of the infield in the top of the eighth inning.

Jordan Rabbitt struck out the side in the bottom of the eighth for OHS.

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