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Examiner
  • Errors doom Jaguars in attempt to reach state final four

  • The Blue Springs South High School baseball team followed one of its finest moments with one of its most disappointing.

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  • The Blue Springs South High School baseball team followed one of its finest moments with one of its most disappointing.
    The Jaguars committed four errors Thursday afternoon in a season-ending 4-2 Class 5 state quarterfinal loss to Staley on their home field, one step short of the final four.
    “You know how good we felt the other night?” asked junior shortstop Colton Pogue, referring to the Jaguars' 2-1 sectional win over Rockhurst. “That's how bad we feel tonight. We felt so good after that win against Rockhurst and now, we're just trying to figure out what happened.
    “We can't make four errors in a game – but we did tonight – and it cost us the chance to go to state.”
    Senior designated hitter Dominic DeFeo, who drove in the two South runs with a ringing double to left field in the bottom of the fifth inning, agreed.
    “I'm not blasting my teammates, errors happen,” said DeFeo, who was the lone Jaguar to come up with a hit with men in scoring position. “But you can't make four errors in a game like this. Austin (Simms) pitched a lot better than the final score would indicate.
    “How do you play so well against Rockhurst then play like we played tonight? It's just so disappointing. This isn't how I wanted my last high school game to end.”
    Staley takes a 20-7 record to the state semifinals, which begins next week in O'Fallon, Mo.
    “They deserve to go to state,” South coach Ben Baier said after his team wrapped up a 14-8 campaign. “They were the better team today. We outhit them, but we also out-errored them and that was the difference in the game.”
    An error and wild pitch led to two Staley runs in a three-run second inning and another error paved the way for the Falcons’ fourth run.
    “We knew we'd score eventually,” said Pogue, who walked to lead off the fifth inning. “We had the chance for a big inning, but just couldn't get it done. That was pretty disappointing.”
    After he walked, Simms helped his own cause on the mound by hitting a double off starter Austin White.
    Staley coach David Wilson brought in Michael Estrada to face Reece Eddins and the lanky first baseman grounded out to third. DeFeo followed with his two-run double, but the next two Jaguars made quick outs to kill the rally.
    “We've gotten the big hits in the postseason, and we got one today from Dom, but that was it,” Baier said.
    Nick Mertes opened the bottom of the sixth with a single and again, Wilson made a pitching move.
    He brought in Brian Regan, who had three hits, scored a run and drove in another while playing first base. Regan coaxed a double-play ball and ground out to end that threat.
    Page 2 of 2 - “Regan had a heck of a game,” Baier said. “He got some big hits and we couldn't do anything with him on the mound.”
    The Jaguars went down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the seventh.
    “The good thing is that we're a young team and a lot of the guys who played tonight will be back next year,” Baier said. “What's the old saying, 'You have to lose some, before you win some.' They don't want to experience another loss like this one, and you know they'll do everything they can to make sure it doesn't happen again.
    “It's tough, but it's baseball.”
    Pogue finished with a single, double and walk. Jacob Clark had two singles.
    Conner Davis threw two scoreless innings of relief for the Jaguars. Simms allowed two earned runs in five innings.
    Follow Bill Althaus on Twitter: @AlthausEJC
     
     

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