O’s take first loss, bounce back quickly
It took eight tries, but opponents finally got the best of the Missouri High School Baseball Coaches Association’s fourth-ranked Concordia High School Orioles baseball team on Tuesday, April 2, when the O’s fell to the Lexington High School Minutemen, 7-5.
The Orioles would waste no time in getting back to form, taking out I-70 Conference foe Wellington-Napoleon High School Tigers the next day, 13-3, to conclude their week’s action.
Tuesday, April 2 — Non-conference — Concordia High School
Despite a few good opportunities late in the game, the Orioles weren’t able to pull off the comeback victory against Lexington High School.
Concordia kicked the scoring off in the bottom of the first when sophomore Troy Brandt turned a leadoff walk into a run when junior Brayden McGinnis doubled him home two at-bats later.
The score held at 1-0 until the bottom of the second, when, with junior Jaren Adams at first and junior Peyton Moore at third, Adams swiped second base and Moore went home on the throw. Adams would also cross the plate shortly after, when Brandt capped the inning off with a two-out double, moving the score to 3-0.
Lexington responded in the top of the third, however, when a two-out Minutemen rally produced five runs and a newly-minted 5-3 LHS advantage. Lexington would score again in the fifth inning, when a double and single with one out eventually produced two runs.
The Orioles refused to go down without a fight, however, as the O’s would score two runs on a two-RBI single from sophomore Dante Stockwell, but the damage would ultimately be too much to recover from, and the Orioles would fall, 7-5.
Minutemen pitchers had a solid amount of success, limiting Concordia hitters to just five hits. CHS hitters did do a good job of working counts, however, drawing five walks and drawing two hit-by-pitches.
McGinnis went 1-2 with a double and two walks, while Brandt finished as the only other Oriole to reach base safely twice (1-3, walk).
The Orioles fall to 7-1 (3-0) with the first loss of their season.
Lexington moved to 5-4 on the season with the victorious effort.
Wednesday, April 3 — I-70 Conference — Concordia HS
Eager to start a new winning streak, Concordia took advantage of the opportunity to beat up on Class 1 District 12 and I-70 Conference opponent Wellington-Napoleon High School, shutting the game down early on en route to the 13-3 blowout win.
Despite allowing a run in the top of the first inning, five of the first seven CHS hitters reached base, while the other two produced sacrifices to help produce a 4-1 advantage after one inning.
A one-out double off the bat of sophomore Troy Brandt eventually produced a run when he and senior Matthew Gatewood — who reached via walk the next at-bat — stole second and third base, respectively, on a double steal. Junior Brayden McGinnis followed them up with a single, driving in Brandt and moving the score to 5-1.
Sophomore Austin Droege and junior Peyton Moore would score in the third inning to move the score to 7-1, and despite allowing one run in the fourth and fifth innings each, the damage was already done.
O’s hitters would pile on a few insurance runs over the remainder innings to move the final score to 13-3 and the winning streak back to one.
Droege continued a solid sophomore campaign from the mound, striking out six over five innings while allowing two hits and yielding zero free passes. Of his three runs allowed, only one was earned.
Multiple Orioles had excellent games. Brandt led the way with a 3-3 performance, drawing a walk and stroking two doubles. Gatewood went 2-3 with a walk, while McGinnis finished 2-3 with five RBIs. Moore also smoked a double to left field as part of his 2-2 ball game.
The Orioles moved to 8-1 (4-0) with the victory over WellNap.
The Tigers fall to 4-2 (2-2) with the loss.