Class 1A-2A baseball playoffs outlook

News-DemocratMay 19, 2014 

1A Lebanon Regional

Seeding: (1) Lebanon (10-15), (2) Odin, (3) Mulberry Grove, (4) Sandoval, (5) Madison

Pick: Lebanon

Could surprise: Odin

Breakdown: Cahokia Conference-Kaskaskia Division co-champ Lebanon has one of region's top small-school players in senior two-way threat Zach Becherer (.470, 12 doubles, one homer, 20 RBIs; 4-5, 2.82 ERA, 81 strikeouts in 44 2/3 innings). The Greyhounds also feature Zach Grob (.395, five doubles, 12 RBIs; 3-3, 2.97 ERA), J.C. Villmer (.333) and Taylor Schmitt (.311, five doubles, six triples, 16 RBIs).

1A New Athens Regional

Seeding: (1) New Athens (14-17), (2) Okawville (9-14), (3) Valmeyer (13-21), (4) Marissa (5-18), (5) Christ Our Rock Lutheran

Pick: New Athens

Could surprise: The Okawville-Valmeyer semifinal winner.

Breakdown: Senior first baseman-pitcher Tyler Meyer (.371, six doubles, three homers, 18 RBIs) helps carry the New Athens offense along with Tyler Brandenburger (.337, 15 RBIs), Brandon Contratto (.306, 10 doubles, 15 RBIs) and Nick Ozier (.242, six doubles 14 RBIs). Contratto (4-3, 2.30 ERA) is also a solid starter for the Cahokia Conference-Kaskaskia Division co-champion Jackets, who beat Valmeyer and Marissa twice and Okawville once. Okawville is led by Alec Wisneski (.406, eight doubles, 12 RBIs) and Brad Fuhrhop (.396, three doubles, 19 RBIs), but lacks dominant pitching. Valmeyer has two solid bats in Dakota Maus (.396, six doubles, 10 RBIs) and Mark Nappier (.394, 14 doubles, two homers, 32 RBIs). Maus has been strong on the mound all season and is 7-1 with a 1.25 ERA and 84 strikeouts in 61 2/3 innings.

2A Nashville Regional

Seeding: (1) Nashville (30-3), (2) Freeburg (25-8), (3) Althoff (23-7), (4) Gibault (20-10), (5) Dupo (10-16)

Pick: Nashville

Could surprise: It wouldn't be a surprise to see any of the top four seeds win here. It's that close.

Breakdown: This regional has more than enough talent to be considered a sectional and the winner should have a chance to make a long playoff trip. Pitching decisions will be huge since it might take a No. 1 starter just to get to the championship game.

2A Wesclin Regional

Seeding: (1) Carlyle (22-9), (2) Greenville (24-10), (3) Wesclin (20-13), (4) Central (10-19), (5) Mater Dei (11-15)

Pick: Carlyle

Could surprise: The Greenville-Wesclin semifinal winner

Breakdown: No matter what the seed, never underestimate the Wesclin Warriors. They made it to the state tournament two years ago as a No. 6 seed in a loaded regional and cannot be overlooked here. Carlyle and Greenville both have dominant pitching.

-- Norm Sanders

Belleville News-Democrat is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service