WINDSOR —In what was originally scheduled as a nine-inning affair, Teutopolis Junior Legion Post 924 threatened to end the game early against host Shelby County Posts 289/611/725, jumping out to an 11-4 lead through four and a half innings.
As it turned out, the game would indeed be called prematurely, after only seven frames, but it was the home team that wound up celebrating. Shelby County scored five runs in the fifth to creep within two, then blew the lid clear off with a 12-run seventh inning to close 17 unanswered runs and a shocking 21-11 comeback victory.
"We haven't been aggressive all year at the plate," Shelby County coach Jim Hutchinson said. "Finally, they decided to get aggressive tonight."
Shelby County sprayed the field for ten hits in the final three innings, four of which were doubles. Five players closed with multi-RBI games for Hutchinson's squad, led by Derek Moschenrose's (Windsor/Stew-Stras) four-RBI effort off two singles and a double.
"They're perennially a good team," Hutchinson said of Teutopolis, "so everybody got geared up for it."
The comeback started in the fifth, when Shelby County first climbed out of a steep, seven-run hole with an impressive two-out rally. Josh Overbeck (Windsor/Stew-Stras) led off the scoring with his RBI double up the middle, and Mark Jones (Windsor/Stew-Stras) plated two more with his single to center. Following a double from Tyler Hendryx (Shelbyville), Moschenrose made it four consecutive hits for Shelby County on a two-RBI single to right center to cut the lead to 11-9."
Everybody pitched in and did their jobs," Hutchinson said.
Despite the big inning, Shelby County still trailed by two.
That was until the seventh, when 12 Shelby County runners touched home plate in a monstrous inning. Moschenrose had both an RBI single and RBI double in the deciding frame, Nic Hutchinson (Windsor/Stew-Stras) hit a sacrifice fly, Devon Deremiah scored two on a single and Trevor Easton connected on an RBI shot to right field to assist the offensive barrage.
"I'm going to credit the kids tonight," Hutchinson said. "They battled back. It's nice to get this win in right before we go to districts."
Shelby County was also assisted from a number of Teutopolis miscues. Each team accounted for four errors, but it was the late-game mistakes in the form of wild pitches and passed balls that did Teutopolis in.Though the train came off the track late, there was some encouraging signs of life for the visiting team, particularly offensively, early in the ballgame.
"I felt real good about the way we swung the bat," Teutopolis coach Dennis Blievernicht said. "We hit the ball really well early in the game. I said (to the team), 'That's what you take away from this game.'"
Jacob Roepke, Kyle Smith and John Kreke all had two RBIs for Teutopolis. On the mound, Jacob Kramer (Windsor/Stew-Stras) picked up the win, pitching the last and only two shutout innings for Shelby County. Kramer struck out two batters with no walks.
Kyle Hardiek took the loss, surrendering seven runs with two strikeouts in his 0.1 innings of action. Both teams will now direct their focus to the upcoming district tournament this weekend. Seedings will be announced later this week.
Braden Layer can be reached at 217-347-7151, ext. 123, or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Teutopolis	3 2 2	2 2 0	0 11 14 4Shelby County	2 1 0	1 5 0	12 21 15 4WP - Kramer	LP - HardiekTeutopolis: Roepke (2 1B, 2B, 2 RBI); Drees (1B); Westendorf (2 1B, RBI); Smith (3 1B, 2 RBI); Koester (2B, RBI); Kreke (1B, 2B, 2 RBI); Roewe (1B); Kremer (1B, RBI).Shelby County: Hendryx (2 1B, 2B, 3 RBI); Moschenrose (2 1B, 2B, 4 RBI); Hutchinson (2B, 2 RBI); Deremiah (1B, 2 RBI); Kramer (2 1B, 2B, 2 RBI); Easton (1B, RBI); Overbeck (1B, 2B, RBI); Jones (1B, 2 RBI).