Rain-shortened Schedule Fails to Slow Down Vikings Baseball

By Jeff Whitener for Live Stream STL Media

Photo by CheapSeats Photography

Last week, the Jefferson College baseball team was scheduled to play 5 games against 2 different teams, but once again a third opponent emerged. As she has so many times this Spring, Mother Nature won the first 3 games with showers and storms. After a long day of rain on Friday, the entire team and staff worked tirelessly to get the field in Hillsboro ready to play on Saturday. Their efforts prior to the games as well as during the games were rewarded with a doubleheader sweep of St. Louis Community College, 5-2 & 8-0.

St. Louis jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the 1st inning of game 1 after consecutive doubles to start the game and later, a wild pitch. The Vikings would get 1 run back in the bottom of the 2nd when Matt Albritton led off the inning by taking the 1st pitch he saw high over the centerfield fence. The very next inning, Jefferson would tie the game at 2 after Josh Gibson led off with a walk then stole 2nd base. With 2 outs, Gibson took off for 3rd and made it in safely. With matt Albritton at the plate, the Archer's catcher tried to pick off Gibson at 3rd, but an errant throw sailed into the outfield, allowing Gibson to scamper home. The game remained knotted at 2 until the bottom of the 6th inning. With 1 out, Matt Albritton singled. Bryce Miller was up next, and he smoked a sinking line drive to centerfield that rolled all the way to the fence for a triple. Albritton strode home, giving the Vikes a lead they would never relinquish. The next three batters would reach base with hits. CJ Cepicky singled, scoring Miller. Gideon Antle, in his 1st game back from injury, doubled home Cepicky to make the score 5-2. Lefthander Luke Nichols shut the door on the Archers, pitching the final 2 innings and giving up no runs and no hits. The Vikings managed 9 hits in the game. Albritton, Cepicky, Miller, and Antle all had multiple hits in the game and all 4 players recorded an RBI. Jordan Duncan Started game 1 and pitched 3 innings, giving up 2 runs on 4 hits while striking out 2 and walking one.

Tanner Perry was on the bump for game 2 and pitched a gem. The freshman from Fort Zumwalt High School tossed 7 innings, allowing the Archers only 3 hits. He struck out 13 St. Louis batters and walked no one. Jefferson started the scoring in the 2nd inning. Matt Albritton led off the frame with a base hit. With 1 out, CJ Cepicky singled and Albritton came all the way around to score. With 2 outs, Colby Ott worked a base on balls. The next batter, Payton Howard, was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Josh Gibson took advantage of a 2-strike pitch and doubled to left field, scoring Cepicky and Ott, and making the score 3-0. Jefferson added to their lead in the next inning when Matt Schark led off the inning with a solo blast. The score remained 4-0 until the bottom of the 6th. Consecutive singles from Cepicky and Hesston Gray started things off. Colby Ott was next to the plate, and he bunted, sacrificing both runners to 2nd and 3rd. Payton Howard then singled up the middle and Cepicky and Gray came home. With Howard on the base, Josh Gibson laced a double down the line, plating Howard. The score was 7-0 and Jefferson would need a single run to end the game early. They would need just 1 more inning for that to happen. With 1 out, Bryce Miller “Called Game” with a home run, sending everyone home happy with an 8-0 victory. In addition to Perry’s heroics on the mound, Josh Gibson had a big day with the bat. The sophomore shortstop was 3 for 4 at the plate with 3 RBI. CJ Cepicky was 2 for 3 with an RBI and 2 runs scored.

On Tuesday (19th), The Vikings traveled to Cape Girardeau, Missouri to play 12th-ranked Dyersburg State at historic Capaha Park. Jefferson would pound out 12 hits en route to an 11-5 win over the Eagles. The Vikings got things rolling early. After the Eagles scored a run in the top of the 1st, the Boys from the ‘Boro unpacked their bats and went to work. Payton Howard led off the inning with a single and Josh Gibson followed him with a walk. Joe Hamilton grounded out to the 2nd baseman, but Howard came around from 2nd and scored, with Gibson moving to 3rd. Gibson would then score on a wild pitch before Matt Schark reached on an error. With Schark aboard, Matt Albritton smacked a 2-run homer to left field and the Vikings were up 4-1. Dyersburg got 1 of those runs back in the 2nd but the Vikes responded. In the bottom of the frame, the red-hot Josh Gibson hit a 1-out triple. Joe Hamilton walked behind him, putting runners at the corner for Matt Schark. Schark cranked his team-leading 15th home run of the season, a 3-run shot to left field. But Jeffco wasn’t done yet. In the 3rd inning, Payton Howard worked a 2-out walk. Josh Gibson hit a double, scoring Howard and giving the Vikings an 8-2 lead. Jefferson got another run in the 4th after singles from Schark, Bryce Miller, and an RBI knock from Gideon Antle. In the bottom of the 5th, Josh Gibson made the score 10-3 and was a single away from hitting for the cycle. The Eagles got 2 runs in the top of the 7th to make the score 10-5. The Vikings would score the final run of the game in the 8th, after a double by Matt Albritton and a sacrifice fly from Colby Ott. Dalen Stewart picked up the win on the mound for the Vikings. The freshman from Willard High School pitched 5 innings, giving up 3 runs on 5 hits. He was followed by Kaden Jacobi, Gavyn Dockery, and Alex Logusch, who secured the win. Josh Gibson, Matt Schark, and Matt Albritton all shined at the plate for Jeffco. The trio accounted for 3 hits apiece, 8 runs, and 9 RBI.

The win improved Jefferson’s season record to 25-16. The Vikings have won 11 of their last 12 games. Jeffco is back in action this Friday (22nd) for the start of a 4 -game series at 4th-ranked Crowder. They will finish the regular season at home on Saturday, the 30 with 2 games against John A Logan College
Come on out and support your Vikings!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *