The Marion Warriors and Sedgwick Cardinals split a doubleheader Tuesday in a possible preview of the regional baseball championship.
The Warriors were ranked fifth entering the doubleheader by the Kansas Association of Baseball Coaches, and the Cardinals were ranked second. Both teams are in the regional scheduled for May 19 and 20 in Marion.
Sedgwick eked out a 4-2 victory in the first game, but Marion came back with a 7-0 shutout in the second game.
Marion had to play from behind nearly all of the first game, as Sedgwick took a lead in the first inning and extended it to 4-0 in the fifth inning.
In the top of the sixth, Taylor Heidebrecht drove in a run with a single, and Grif Case then drove in Heidebrecht to cut the deficit to 4-2, but Marion was unable to score again and lost 4-2.
Marion jumped out to an immediate advantage in the second game with a leadoff double by Heidebrehct, who scored to give Marion a 1-0 lead.
Case hit a three-run home run in the top of the second to extend Marion’s lead to 4-0. The Warriors added a run in the top of the third and two more in the top of the fourth, then closed the game out on defense, shutting out the Cardinals.
Marion’s next games are Tuesday at Ell-Saline.
Warriors shut out Clay Center
Marion swept the Clay Center Tigers on Thursday as Marion’s pitchers combined for 12 shutout innings.
Luke Steele pitched a complete-game shutout and struck out five batters while giving up four hits and one walk in the first game of the doubleheader. Taylor Heidebrecht, Dylan Seacat, Grif Case, Zac Lewman, and Zach Robson each drove in a run in the game, which the Warriors won 6-0.
Heidebrecht pitched four innings to start the second game, striking out five and giving up three hits and a walk. Case closed the game with one perfect inning, including one strikeout.
Jacob Baldwin drove in a run with a single and Lewman took a walk with the bases loaded to give Marion a 2-0 lead in the first inning. Seacat added another run with a single in the second inning, then Marion put together a big inning in the bottom of the fourth. Five consecutive batters hit singles, scoring three runs. A wild pitch scored another run, and Caleb Williams drove in another with a double to centerfield to lead 8-0.
Case drove in a run in the bottom of the fifth, then Baldwin hit a single to right field to score the final run. Marion won via 10-run rule in the fifth inning.
Coach Roger Schroeder said he had hoped to give Case more innings pitched to keep his arm ready, but the offensive success prevented that.
Schroeder said the team’s offense had been in a bit of a slump recently, but he thought it took steps forward Thursday.
“Our best baseball is in front of us,” he said.