Rolla bounces Lebanon from districts for the second straight season

LCR photo/Alex Boyer
Lebanon junior Troy Reynolds delivers a pitch against the Rolla Bulldogs on Monday night at Waynesville High School. Reynolds finished the game with 5 2/3 innings pitched and struck out nine hitters. Rolla beat Lebanon 8-6 in 8 innings.


For the second straight year, the Rolla Bulldogs ended the Lebanon High School baseball teams season, this time with an 8-6 come-from-behind win in eight innings on Monday night at Waynesville in the Missouri Class 5 District 9 tournament.

Coming into the tournament, Lebanon was the No. 2 seed with Rolla playing as the No. 3 seed and the ‘Jackets had already beaten Rolla once on March 25, 3-2.

With the loss, it now marks the sixth consecutive season that LHS has failed to advance to a district championship game with four of those losses coming to lower-seeded teams than LHS (2019, 2018, 2015, 2014), and two of those losses Lebanon represented the tournament as the No. 1 seed (2014 and 2015).

With the game tied at 6-6 in the top of the eighth inning, Rolla junior Drew Johnson delivered his fourth RBI of the contest on a bases-loaded double to the fence with two outs to score the go-ahead runs after an error from the Lebanon third baseman cost the ‘Jackets an out to begin the inning.

Senior ace pitcher Blayne Yarger shut down the ‘Jackets in the bottom of the frame, striking out the side to send the Bulldogs to the championship game to face Camdenton that was slated to take place on Tuesday.

“You have to tip your cap to Rolla because they did exactly what they had to do to stay in the ballgame,” Lebanon head coach Dustin Young said. “This is something that that I will dissect and look at ways that I can grow as a coach. There are calls that made a lot of sense that kind of backed up on us, and that is just the game. You have to learn from it and move forward.”

After Lebanon took a 4-0 lead heading into the top of the fifth inning courtesy of RBIs from Troy Reynolds, Drew Dustin, and Drew McBride, the Bulldogs responded in a big way.

Yarger highlighted Rolla’s fifth frame by belting a two-run triple on a ball that hit the top of the right-centerfield fence and bounced back into play. Johnson, the unsung hero of the game, hit a sacrifice fly to center, cutting Lebanon's lead to 4-3.

The ‘Jackets got an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth inning when sophomore Drew McBride hammered a solo home run that deflected off of Yarger’s glove and over the fence in centerfield to make the score 5-3.

For the complete article, see Wednesday’s print edition of The County Record, or view online.


The Laclede County Record

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