By Drew Terhall
NEW MADISON — The one seeded Tri-Village baseball team had their season ended in the Southwest Division IV sectional with an 8-4 loss to the seventh seeded Springfield Catholic Central.
The Patriots were able to make contact all game long, but couldn’t get anything to drop their way. Head coach Josh Davies said the team got out to a good start but couldn’t continue the momentum, just like the second half of their season.
“This is kind of like our second half this year. We started off hot and then in the second half, we had a few wins here and there, but it just felt like we never got back into the complete flow,” Davies said.
The Patriots struck first in the bottom of the first inning. Senior CJ Osborne got on base and was attempting to steal third. The throw went past the third baseman and Osborne was able to get to home safely to take a 1-0 lead.
The Irish tied it up in the second after a wild pitch. But in the bottom of the second, Tri-Village got runners in scoring position and capitalized. Freshman Noah Finkbine drove in a run on a sacrifice flyout to regain the lead, 2-1.
Catholic Central took control of the game in the third. A RBI double tied the game up, 2-2. After a few misplays from the Tri-Village defense, the Irish took a 3-2 lead. However, the defense did make a nice play to prevent another run to score with a throw to home plate to get the runner out.
With bases loaded, Catholic Central drew two walks to score two runs and took a 5-2 lead.
The Patriots were able to get runners on after the Irish took the lead, but couldn’t close the gap. The momentum from the third inning carried over for the next few innings. The Catholic Central defense kept making plays to hold off Tri-Village.
In the fourth, the Patriots had runners on first and third with one out. The Irish got a double play to end the inning when the third baseman caught a linedrive and tagged the runner out at third.
Catholic Central added on two more runs in the sixth to go up 7-2. In the bottom of the same inning, Tri-Village chipped away at the deficit. Senior Logan Call scored on a wild pitch. With two outs, Finkbine drove in another run with a RBI hit.
But in the seventh, the Irish scored an insurance run and held strong after the Patriots had runners in scoring position in the bottom of the inning.
Senior Jace Lipps pitched 2.2 innings and had five strikeouts. Osborne pitched 4.1 innings and had five strikeouts as well.
Davies said the seniors have done a lot for this program before and during the season. The six seniors leaving all made an impact during their time with the program.
“They’ve always given full effort and always been to offseason things. They dedicated so much time to us. Just great young men and we’re going to miss them,” Davies said.
Tri-Village finishes the 2023 season with a 11-9 record and a 7-4 conference record. That tied them for third in the WOAC standings. While the team is losing some key players for next season, Davies said it’s the younger players time to show what they can do.
“The underclassmen, it’s their time to step up and work in the offseason,” Davies said.
Contact Daily Advocate sports editor Drew Terhall at [email protected]