Ohio Spotlight Game: D-II State Semifinal - #17 Tallmadge vs Maumee



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By: Bruce Hefflinger
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Ohio Spotlight Game: D-II State Semifinal - #17 Tallmadge vs Maumee

COLUMBUS – Four consecutive two-out extra base hits ignited a three-run fourth-inning to lift Tallmadge past Maumee 4-1 in the Division II state semifinals Saturday night.

The Blue Devils, seeking the second state title in school history, will play 13th-ranked Chaminade Julienne on Saturday at 1 p.m. for the D-II crown.

Down 1-0, Scott Seeker doubled to left with two away in the Tallmadge fourth. A Josh Taylor triple tied the game before the Devils went in front to stay on a Jared Burick RBI double, one of three hits in the game by the Tallmadge junior center fielder. Jake Rensel then capped the uprising with a run-scoring double down the right-field line.

The Blue Devils added an insurance run when Sam Seeker hit an inside-the-park home run on a drive to deep center field to lead off the Tallmadge seventh.

Zach Boyd scatter five hits and was helped out by a strong defensive effort in going the distance to pick up the victory for the 17th-ranked Blue Devils. The righty fanned five and walked three in the victory for Tallmadge.

Maumee scored its lone run off of the junior right-hander in the first on a Tyler Archambeau RBI single to left after a walk to Blake Adams and a hit-by-pitch to Matt Burkett.

Hot Takes

Stat of the game: Seven extra base hits by Tallmadge, five doubles, a triple and a home run sparked the win. Six of the extras came from the fourth inning on after Justin Studenka blanked the Blue Devils on one hit through the first three frames.

Lefty lumber: The first five hitters in the Tallmadge lineup are left-handed as is eight-hole hitter, with five of them pounding out a base knock in the nine-hit attack.

Defensive gems: The Tallmadge outfield came up big, none more so in back-to-back innings. In the fifth, left fielder Sam Seeker made a diving catch toward the line with one on and two away. A frame later, after missing a diving grab, right fielder Seth Gergely made a perfect relay to shortstop Phillip Glasser who threw to Jake Reifsnyder at third to nail Caleb Brown trying to stretch a double into a triple.

Strong in defeat: Freshman left-handed stick Zach Marvin hit a triple off the bottom of the right field wall in his first at-bat and later flew out to the warning track in right

Player of the game: Burrick was a perfect 3-for-3 at the plate, driving in what proved to be the winning run and scoring the third run for Tallmadge

Season finale: The loss ended an unlikely tournament run for Maumee, the fourth-place team in the Northern Lakes League, The Panthers beat two-time defending state champion Defiance 4-3 in the district semifinals before rallying from a 3-1 deficit to beat-top ranked Wapakoneta 5-3 in the district finals.

What’s next?: Five key performers are back for Maumee, including Thursday’s starting pitcher Justin Studenka. After a three-year run to state from 2000-02, Tallmadge is in Columbus for the first time, Scott and Sam Seeker’s dad Don, now the school’s athletic director, was the head coach of the Blue Devils during their heyday, topped off by the 2002 title.

Linescore

Tallmadge        000 300 1 - 4 9 1
Maumee          100 000 0 - 1 5 0  

Records: Tallmadge 24-7, Maumee 22-10.

Winning Pitcher: Zach Boyd (7 innings, 1 run, 1 earned, 5 hits, 5 strikeouts, 3 walks).

Losing Pitcher: Justin Studenka (7 innings, 4 runs, 4 earned, 9 hits, 4 strikeouts, 1 walk).

Leading Hitters: (Tallmadge) - Phillip Glasser single; Zach Boyd single; Scott Seeker double; Josh Taylor triple; Jared Burick single, 2 doubles; Jake Rensel double; Sam Seeker home run. (Maumee) - Tyler Archambeau single; Caleb Brown single, double; John Henry double; Zach Marvin triple.