Cards best Spring Hill for state title
The Eudora Cardinals 14-year-old team won a state championship and some sweet revenge at the United States Specialty Sports Association Class A state baseball tournament in Olathe last weekend.
The Cardinals rolled over the Blue Valley Reds in the first game, K.C. Royals in second game and the K.C. Spartans in the third game. In fourth game, Eudora faced better competition in the K.C. Knights, coach Mike Westerhouse said. The Cardinals won that game after the Knights kept it close for two innings.
In the championship game, the Cardinals faced a well-coached Spring Hill team, which owned a narrow victory over Eudora from earlier in the season. With the state title on the line, the Cardinals coasted to an easy 12-1 victory.
The rout started after a first inning that saw Eudora retired in order and Spring Hill scoring one run.
The big second inning started when the Spring Hill pitcher battled control. Jared Reetz and Michael Whitten each walked, and David Westerhouse was hit by a pitch. Two more walks were issued to Austin Hoover and Charles Mersmann before Kyle Scrimsher rapped a bases-loaded single to center, driving in two. Kent Abel then singled, driving in two more. Catcher Mike Ortega drove in another run with a shot to the outfield before the side was retired.
The defense returned to the field with starter Reetz on the mound. Infielders Erryn Kindle at second base and Abel at shortstop rolled a double play keeping the team out of trouble. Reetz struck out the next batter.
The next inning, Abel and Kindle singled in front of Stephen Prudden's triple. Westerhouse had a sacrifice, and Hoover singled for another big inning.
"Our pitching continued good as Kent Swanson came in to close the final two innings. Westerhouse said, "Swanson threw hard and finished the game for us."
Max Alvarez was not able to participate with the team in the tournament over the weekend.
"Max was another pitcher for us that usually dominated," Westerhouse said.
Pitchers were Mersmann, Reetz, Kent Swanson, Kindle and Prudden. They only allowed 10 runs in the five-game tourney. The Cardinals scored 88 runs during the tournament.
"I am very proud to be a part of this team with the excellent help of Gary Kindle, Mitch Prudden and David Alvarez," Westerhouse said. "The team came out to play. They hit the ball well."