Fairfield shares conference title with Mount PleasantMount Pleasant plays Fort Madison in playoffs at 5 p.m. Friday in Fairfield. Trojans’ game against Washington will follow.
MOUNT PLEASANT – The Mount Pleasant baseball team scored big in the first inning of Monday’s doubleheader against Fort Madison, and the Panthers didn’t let up until they had claimed a sweep and a share of the Southeast Conference crown.
The Panthers won by scores of 12-1 and 12-2 and finish the regular season 16-12 overall.
They wrapped up the SEC season with a record of 12-4, tied with Fairfield. Fort Madison took third at 10-6, followed by Washington (5-11) and Keokuk (1-15).
“We just put the bat on the ball and put pressure on the pitcher,” Mount Pleasant Coach Brent Broeker said. “In game one especially, we kept putting runs on the board, spreading the gap.”
“We came up to the plate ready to hit; we didn’t wait around,” Jacob Dilks said.
Alex O’Donnell started the Panthers off with a triple and scored on an Austin Smith single. Justin Dilks’s double brought in Smith, and a double by Carson Remick knocked in Colton Schinstock, who had walked.
The Panthers then tacked on three more runs in the second, one in the third and four in the fourth to end the game early.
Dustin Amos and the Panther defense allowed one run in the first inning and shut down the Bloodhounds from there.
Amos gave up two hits and two walks, striking out six in the five-inning effort.
“After the first game, I don’t know, maybe we were just a little too relaxed,” Broeker said. “But we focused back in to put it away.”
The Panthers scored three in the first frame, but were then held scoreless until the fifth. Fort Madison put up their pair of runs in the early innings to keep the game close.
“In game two, we faced a pretty tough kid,” Broeker said, “(and he) held us to 3-2 for a while, but he just ran out of gas.”
Pitching for the Panthers was Jacob Dilks.
“In the first couple innings I was shaky, but every inning after that it kind of picked up,” he said. “It helps to have good coaches behind you, helping you into the late innings.”
It was the late innings when the Panthers took their big lead, posting three runs in the fifth and scoring six in what would be the final frame.
Trey Magnani tripled and crossed the plate on a wild pitch/dropped third strike to Austin Smith, giving the Panthers the 10-run lead they needed to end the game and seal their share of the conference title.
The district game begins at 5 p.m. on Friday in Fairfield.
“It’s too bad that we have to face them in the first round — I think both teams deserve to move on,” Broeker said.
Fort Madison 100 00 — 1
Mount Pleasant 431 4x — 12
WP — Dustin Amos
Mount Pleasant — Alex O’Donnell: 2-4, 3B, run. Austin Smith: 2-3, BB, 2 RBI, 3 runs. Colton Schinstock: 1-2, 2 BB, 3 RBI. Justin Dilks: 1-2, 2B, 2 BB, RBI, 2 runs. Jacob Dilks: 0-3, BB, run. Carson Remick: 2-2, 2B, BB, 3 RBI, run. Connor Shull: 1-2, BB, RBI, run. Justin Chalupa: 1-2, 2 runs. Tony Cristoforo: 0-0, run. Steals — Smith (2).
Fort Madison 110 000 — 2
Mount Pleasant 300 036 — 12
WP — Jacob Dilks
Mount Pleasant — O’Donnell: 0-3, 2 BB, run. Smith: 1-5, RBI, run. Schinstock: 2-3, BB. Justin Dilks: 2-4, 2 runs. Remick: 2-4, 2B, RBI, 2 runs. Tyler Pace: 2-3, 2B, RBI. Amos: 1-4, 3B, 3 RBI, run. Chalupa: 1-1, 2 BB, RBI, run. Trey Magnani: 1-3, 3B, RBI, run. Cristoforo: 1-1. Devyn Broeker: 0-0, 3 runs.