The Trenton Bulldogs, on Friday night, saw the second year of the school’s fledgling baseball program come to an end, in a 17-0 loss to #3 seed Bishop LeBlond, in the first round of the Class 3, District 16 tournament at Lathrop High School, heard on Hot Country Z 101.7 and KTTNSports.com.
While no question Trenton lost to the better and more established team, key moments in the 4 1/2 inning game kept the Bulldogs from turning a blowout into a much more competitive game. LeBlond hopped on Trenton starter Cole Schilling in the bottom of the first inning, with Jaren Guck opening the scoring on an RBI single, driving home Mason Scheidler, with starting pitcher Frank Gall driving in Will Dryburgh and Guck with a two-run single. The Bulldogs were unable to get out of the 1st keeping the deficit at 3-0 however, as Manny Montoya walked, stole second, and scored on back-to-back wild pitches.
Trenton’s offense, in the first two innings, had base runners reach, as Hunter Dugan had a two-out single in the first, and Cole Schilling led off the 2nd with a base on balls, but strikeouts from Gall ended both threats. LeBlond, in the bottom of the 2nd, extended the lead to 6-0, as Sam Schilling, pitching in relief of his brother, allowed a walk to Dryburgh and a walk to Guck. Those free passes, combined with two fielding errors, a double steal, and a wild pitch, pushed the lead to 6-0.
Trenton’s biggest scoring threat followed in the top of the 3rd inning, as Hunter Dugan batted with runners on the corners and one out. Dugan struck out on a steal attempt of 2nd by Quincy Griffin, who reached base safely, but was called out on batter’s interference.
The floodgates opened for the Golden Eagles offense in the 3rd and 4th innings, with LeBlond exploding for 7 in the bottom of the 3rd (highlighted by Guck’s 3-run triple), and four in the 4th, with Guck driving in all the runs on a grand slam home run over the left field scoreboard. Guck finished with eight RBI’s and scored four times for LeBlond, with Gall contributing three RBI’s to the victory.
The Trenton offense was held to two base hits, but did draw four walks against the combination of three Golden Eagle arms.
The win sends LeBlond into a Monday night (5:00) semifinal with #2 seed East Buchanan, while the top seeded Lathrop Mules, at 7 o’clock, will host the rival Plattsburg Tigers, a 5-1 first round winner over Mid-Buchanan on Friday night.
Despite the disappointment of the final game of the season, Trenton head coach Andy Hight saw many positives in his teams’ play, telling KTTN/KGOZ, “We gave LeBlond too much and they took advantage. I thought our pitchers we’re trying to be too fine around the strike zone and that resulted in too many walks. They scored 7 runs on just 2 swings. That’s hard to overcome. Our defense played well and offensively, we had a ton a great at-bats against three really good arms. I’m very proud of how hard our kids competed throughout the entire game, down to the final out. To start 0-6 and finish the year 9-14 is a huge accomplishment. Every year you’re faced with new and unique challenges and this team battled through a lot adversity. Our seniors became better leaders as the season progressed, our young guys stepped up in some big roles and as a team we accomplished a lot this season. Building a program takes time and it’s not going to happen over night. For me personally, this was a very special team and I believe they helped lay the foundation for future success!”
Other district baseball finals from the area were:
Class 4, District 16 (Saturday):
Chillicothe 3, Cameron 1
Benton 3, Maryville 0
Class 1, District 16 (Friday):
West Nodaway 7, North Andrew 6
East Atchison 3, DeKalb 2
South Nodaway 12, North Nodaway 2
Class 1, District 15 (Friday):
North Harrison 8, East Harrison 7
Northeast Nodaway 11, Linn County 1
Pattonsburg 17, Grundy R-V 0
Class 2, District 16 (Thursday):
North Platte 6, West Platte 4
Concordia 17, KC Lutheran 0
Crest Ridge 11, Wellington-Napoleon 7
Class 2, District 5 (Friday):
Schuyler County 4, Knox County 3
Canton 11, Mercer (with Princeton) 1
Scotland County 3, Milan 0