Thu May 17, 2012
By Dylan Hefflinger
BRYAN- In a battle of two of the top arms in D-IV Tinora's Tyler McKenney outdueled Edon's Keegan Long to secure a birth in the district finals, with a 3-1 victory.
Unsigned senior McKenney, who just came off of throwing a no-hitter in the sectional finals was dominant on the mound again. The right-hander, who topped out at 85 mph, allowed just three hits and one unearned run while striking out eight.
Scoreless heading into the bottom of the 3rd, Tinora took a 1-0 lead when lead-off hitter Austin Farrington coaxed a two-out walk from Long, a St. Joseph's recruit. After a stolen base, Derek Drewes, a sophomore left-handed hitter, looped a double to short left field just inside the foul line.
The Rams added two big insurance runs in the 5th. Lincoln Cereghin singled with one away and stole second base. After a second out, Farrington walked. Drewes followed with a line single to right scoring Cereghin. The throw home was high allowing Farrington to score as well for a 3-0 advantage.
Edon tallied its only run in the top of the 7th. A double by Long and throwing error by McKenney put runners on the corners with one away. A hit-by-pitch loaded the bases before a force out grounder plated Long with the lone tally by the Blue Bombers.
Long was impressive in defeat, hitting 91 mph against last year's Division III state semifinalists. The right-hander struck out seven and walked two in losing for the first time in 11 decisions.
The 2nd-ranked Rams (24-3) advance to the district finals at Bryan on May 18th at 7:00 p.m. to take on 25th-ranked North Central (20-5), which advanced to the district finals behind the dominant performance of junior Kole Peterson's one-hitter. Edon, ranked 24th in the final poll, bows out of the tournament with a 16-11 record that included two wins over North Central in winning a Buckeye Border Conference title.