DYERSVILLE — The Camanche High School baseball team and Monticello played three games this season decided by three runs or less so, naturally, the fourth installment went down to the wire.
With the game scoreless in the seventh inning, Kyle DeWeerdt hit an RBI single to give the Indians a late lead and ultimately the win, as Camanche held on to defeat Monticello 2-0 in the District No. 7 semifinal Tuesday night at Beckman-Dyersville High School.
After Camanche’s 3-0 victory over North Cedar in Saturday’s quarterfinal, coach Darryl Cochran felt confident in his ace Jake Drury’s ability to pitch the team into the final round.
“When Jake is on the mound, good things happen for us,” Cochran said.
He was correct.
A stellar pitching performance from Drury paved the way for the Indians, as the senior right-hander delivered a complete game shutout, allowing just three hits and one walk while striking out 11 batters.
"He was outstanding on the mound tonight and kept them in check all night," Cochran said.
Monticello starter Ryan Manternach, who entered the game with a 6-0 record and a 0.74 ERA in 37 1/3 innings this season, matched Drury pitch for pitch until the seventh inning.
P.J. Pucket propelled the game-winning rally with one out by reaching first on a pitch that clanked off his batting helmet and into the spectators.
Ethan Buckely entered as a pinch-runner for Pucket and advanced to second on Cade Everson’s well-placed sacrifice bunt. With two outs, DeWeerdt roped a single to score Buckely and break the tie.
Evan Hall scored DeWeerdt, who advanced to second base on the outfield throw from his hit, in the following at-bat with a single to right field.
"We just kept grinding out our at-bats and got the timely hits when we needed them," Cochran said. "It was an outstanding team effort... we played great defense and executed a couple double plays to get out of some trouble early in the game."
Drury did the rest, mowing down the 3-4-5 portion of the Monticello in order to preserve the lead and clinch a berth in the final round, which will be played Saturday against top-seeded Beckman-Dyersville.
Hall had a game-high three hits and DeWeerdt added two to pace the Indians.
Monticello’s Jon Mootz recorded two of the Panthers’ three hits.
Beckman and Camanche will start at 7 p.m. Saturday night at Dyersville Commercial Club Field.
Northeast falters against top-seeded Trailblazers
The Northeast High School baseball team pulled off an impressive quarterfinal victory over Bellevue Saturday night but ran into a highly talented Beckman-Dyersville program to sink the Rebels’ hopes of extending their postseason run.
The Class 2A No. 4-ranked team in the state struck first with a run in the first inning and added another three tallies in the second to open an early 5-0 advantage.
Northeast mustered a run in the third inning but the game unraveled out of reach as Beckman countered with six runs to take an 11-1 lead, which served as the final score in four innings.
Northeast will graduate six seniors: Tristen Daniels, Travis Luett, Caleb Howe, Conner Bodman, Matthew French and Logan Stevenson.