STATE BASEBALL: Johnston Wins 3rd Title, North Polk Loses in ‘Walk’ Off
Great pitching and good defense will get you a long way. It got the Johnston Dragons back to the state championship for the first time since the amazing perfect season in 2008. Sioux City East was the only team standing in their way from their second 4A baseball championship.
The Dragons took control early with a big 2nd inning. Travis Brenner drove in Andrew Heuss to give Johnston a 1-0 lead. That was followed up by Nick Stitzell scoring on a passed ball. Dragons final run in the 2nd was off a Michael Kinning bloop single to right that scored Brenner.
Dragons hung a 5-spot in the 4th and added another run in the 5th on the way to the teams third baseball championship (second 4A title). Joe Hawks got the win allowing only one run on 5 hits, while striking out five. Trevor McCauley allowed two runs in the 6th but Alex McCune shut down the Black Raiders in the 7th. Johnston is, once again, your 4A State Champs.
North Polk got exactly what it wanted. A rematch of last years state title game. North Polk got out to a one run lead as Reed Smith scored on a fielders choice ground out by Brandon Cory.
In the 4th inning Jake Hadaway, Comets starting pitcher, was thrown out at second while trying to steal but also injured his ankle on the slide. He was carted off and replaced by Grant Lang.
Lang tossed two shut-out frames but allowed the tying and winning runs to score on back-to-back bases loaded walks in the bottom of the 7th. Beckman Catholic repeats as champions with a 2-1 win.