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Jr. Hornets Start Season With Second Place Finish

The Nashville Middle School Jr. Hornets finished second in the O’Fallon Tournament this past weekend. The Jr. Hornets defeated Collinsville, Smithton, O’Fallon Fulton, and Triad before falling to Mascoutah in the Championship game. Kneeling front row left to right.  Kolten Gajewski, Radyn Schwartzkopf, Michael Combs, Nolan Heggemeier, Ian Blazier, Aaron Brink. Second row left to right:  JT Malawy, Blaine Emrick, Trey Reinburg, Rylan Hammer, Brady Stein, Aidan Heiman, Quintin Loquasto, Carson Cook, Kaden Gajewski, Garrett Williamson, Bryson McCleary. Back row left to right:  Coach Tebbe, Bennett Briles, Coach Heseman. Not Pictured: Lucas Knepp.

The Nashville Middle School  Jr. Hornets baseball team kicked off the season in impressive fashion with a second place finish at the O’Fallon Tournament. Overall the Jr. Hornets went 4-1 in the tournament, as they defeated Collinsville, Smithton, O’Fallon Fulton, and Triad before falling to Mascoutah in the championship game. Nashville then defeated Carlyle on August 14. The Jr. Hornets are back on the field on August 17 as they travel to  Murphysboro.

In their first game of the tournament, the Jr. Hornets defeated Collinsville 16-4 in five innings. After scoring two runs in the first inning, Nashville scored seven runs in both the third and fifth innings to take control and go on to victory. Michael Combs finished with two hits and three RBIs for the Jr. Hornets. Ian Blazier and Nolan Heggemeier each had two hits as well in the win. Trey Reinburg didn’t give up a run in three innings of work to get the win on the mound.

In game two of the tournament, Nashville outlasted Smithton in a slugfest 12-11. Nashville had a commanding 11-4 lead going into the top of the sixth inning, before the floodgates opened and Smithton tied the game with seven runs in the frame. The Jr. Hornets came right back in the bottom half of the inning getting the winning run as Kolten Gajewski drove in Trey Reinburg. Reinburg had three hits, while both Gajewski and Lucas Knepp each had two hits apiece. Aaron Brink was the winning pitcher on the mound.

In the third game of the tournament, the Jr. Hornets won their third straight game as they defeated O’Fallon Fulton 8-3. Blazier finished with two hits and drove in three runs. Combs drove in two runs, while Heggemeier finished with two hits. Gajewski did not allow a run in three innings of work for the win. Bennett Briles pitched three innings and Blaine Emrick pitched an inning to finish out the win for Nashville.

In the Semi-Final, the Jr. Hornets pitching staff threw a shutout in a 5-0 win over Triad. Combs was the offense for Nashville in the win as he finished with four hits and drove in all five runs for the Jr. Hornets. Heggemeier added two hits in the win. On the mound, Blazier allowed just one hit in three innings for the win. Reinburg pitched three innings and Brink pitched one inning to complete the shutout.

In the championship game, the Jr. Hornets suffered their only loss of the tournament 5-3 to Mascoutah. Nashville and Mascoutah each scored two in the first, but Mascoutah took the lead for good with two more runs in the second.  Nashville would score a run in the third, but could not complete the comeback. Mascoutah scored another run in the sixth for the final score. Blazier had two hits in the loss.

In their next game on the schedule, the Jr. Hornets defeated Carlyle 12 – 2 on the road. Nashville got on the board in the first when Combs drove home Reinburg and Emrick with a triple.

Carlyle would come back to tie the game at two in the bottom of the second, but Nashville would bounce back with five runs in the top of the third to take control. Blazier had a RBI triple, and Combs an RBI single in the frame.

The Jr. Hornets would add another run in the fourth, as Gajewski singled home the eighth run of the game for Nashville.

In the seventh Nashville would score four runs to make the score 12-2. Blazier had a two run single in the inning, and JT Malawy chipped in a RBI single.

Heggemeier and Combs each had three hits in the win. Blazier added two hits. Gajewski was the winning pitcher as he allowed just two runs on one hit in four innings of work. Briles allowed one hit in three innings of relief in the win.

The Jr. Hornets are 5-1 on the season.

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