The Highland High School baseball team went 2-1 and finished second this past weekend at the annual Edwardsville Tournament.
First, on Friday, the Bulldogs edged Chatham Glenwood, 2-1.
Then, on Saturday, Highland split a pair of ballgames. After thumping Lockport 11-2, HHS fell to the host Edwardsville Tigers, 2-1.
Edwardsville and Highland both finished the four-team round robin with a 2-1 record. The head-to-head tiebreaker gave the Tigers the title. Both Glenwood and Lockport went 1-2.
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The Bulldogs improved to 14-8-1 overall and returned to Mississippi Valley Conference play on Monday when they played host to Triad.
Edwardsville 2 Highland 1
In what was a lockdown pitching duel, both teams were only able to muster two hits.
Jake Ramsey (3-2) was very effective for the Bulldogs, as he surrendered just the two runs and two hits. He helped offset six walks with seven strikeouts.
But Edwardsville got shutdown pitching from starter Dan Picchiotti, who stifled Highland to one run, two hits and one walk while punching out seven himself. Reid Hendrickson threw a scoreless seventh despite walking two to earn the save. He stuck out one.
The Tigers (19-5) scored both of their in the first inning. Dylan Burris led off with a triple. After Andrew Yancik coaxed a walk, Burris scored on a double steal. Yancik later scored on another double steal to make it 2-0.
Sophomore Jacob Willis collected both hits for the Bulldogs and scored their lone run in the top of the second. He led off by lining a single to center field, moved up to second on junior Dylan Knebel’s sacrifice, and scored on junior Elliott Prott’s RBI ground out to third base.
Highland 11 Lockport 2
The Bulldogs charged out of the gate with a four-run top of the first inning and never looked back.
After Lockport scored twice in the second, Highland countered with three runs in the third before going on to tack on one in fifth and three more in the sixth.
Junior Connor Pinsker and Willis spearheaded the Bulldogs’ 10-hit attack.
Pinsker went a perfect 3-for-3 with three RBIs and two runs scored. He had a RBI single and a run scored in the first inning, a single and a run scored in the third, and a two-run single in the sixth.
Willis was 2-for-4 with two RBIs and one run. He had a RBI single and a run scored in the third, and later added a run-scoring single in the sixth.
Steven Diaz earned the victory on the bump after going the distance and allowing two unearned runs on five hits and two walks.
Diaz also helped himself at the dish after drilling a double, driving in two runs and scoring one run on a steal of home in the first inning.
Junior Brock Troxell scored a game-high four runs on the strength of one hit and two walks.
Also contributing one hit each were junior Garrett Marti (double, two runs), Prott (one RBI, one walk) and junior Colten Knebel.
Highland 2 Chatham Glenwood 1
On Friday, the Bulldogs entered their last at-bat of the game trailing 1-0 after the Titans finally broke up the scoreless tie in the bottom of the sixth.
Willis reached on an error to lead off the top of the seventh. After the first out was made, Diaz cranked out a double to right field. Next, Prott was intentionally walked to load the base before Willis was gunned down at home plate on Colten Knebel’s fielder’s choice ground ball to third base.
Then on a 1-1 pitch, Jonathan Dickman delivered in the clutch, cracking a game-winning single to left to drive in both Diaz and Prott and give Highland the 2-1 lead.
Robert Sigman retired Chatham Glenwood in order in the home half of the seventh to preserve the win. He yielded one earned run on three hits with no walks and two strikeouts in his three innings of work.
Payne Waldman worked the first four innings and somehow shut the Titans out despite permitting five hits and five walks. He struck out two.
Civic Memorial 4 Highland 1
The Bulldogs, who fell to 2-5 in the Mississippi Valley Conference, could only muster one unearned run and two hits off Eagle pitchers Brandon Hampton and Spencer Powell.
Hampton blanked Highland for five innings, while Powell shut the Bulldogs out for two frames.
For the Bulldogs, Pinsker fell to 2-3 despite only yielding one earned run (two overall) on six hits and three walks in 5 2/3 innings. He fanned three.
Prott gave up two earned runs on four bases on balls and two hits in 1 1/3 innings.
Pinsker and Prott each had one hit for Highland.
Offensively for the Eagles, Powell also chipped in two hits, Hayden Sontag added one hit and two RBIs, and Hampton (double) and Corey Price each had one hit and one RBI.