St. Joe captures first region title in 33 years
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 1:00 PM
MADISON - Thomas Benson pitched a complete game without giving up an earned run while the Bruin offense poured it on, and St. Joseph captured the Region 6-2A crown for the first time since 1981 by whipping Pisgah 10-1 Monday night at D.M. Howie Field.
The Bruins (14-7, 8-0 in district) erased a first-inning 1-0 deficit and took advantage of another solid outing from Benson (5-1), who has now given up one run in 14 innings in his last two starts. St. Joe improved their home record to 9-2.
"This is just huge for the program," St. Joe coach Miller Todd said. "It's huge for the school. There is such a tradition of baseball here, and it started with D.M. Howie, who would be so proud of this group."
The Bruins allowed one unearned run in the top of the first, when third baseman DaJour Evans tried to make up for bobbling the scoop on a hard-charging grounder by spinning and trying to get Pisgah freshman Jay Hales at third. Evans' throw was wide of the bag and Hales scored easily to put the Dragons up 1-0.
Their celebration was short-lived.
The Bruins scored two in the second, three in the fourth (including an error-redeeming, 2-run single off the bat of Evans), one in the fifth and four in the sixth to salt the game away.
Evans finished with three RBIs, and was one of two Bruins, along with John Dieckman, to record multiple hits.
Freshman Paco Bello had a big 2-RBI double, freshman John Topik added an RBI single and Benson helped his own cause with an RBI single.
Beau Nelson drew the start for Pisgah, but gave up five earned runs on seven hits in two innings. Aidan Bradford relieved him in the third, and limited St. Joe to just one more hit, but walked four and gave up four more earned runs.
On the other side, Benson scattered six Pisgah hits (good enough for a .207 opposing average), didn't walk anyone, hit one batter and struck out six.
"He might not have struck out 11 like he did last time out, but he had it tonight," Todd said. "He's a good one, and a good kid."
St. Joseph will host the winner of a three game series between Region 1 runner-up Union and Region 3's third place team Mize. That series is set for May 1-3 in Madison.
The Bruins game against St. Andrew's got rained out Tuesday night, but they'll play Murrah today and travel to Forest Hill on Saturday to close out the regular season.