Jimmies hit blasts and rob them in tough DH sweep vs. Concordia
The Jimmies six game winning streak is their longest since they won six in a row from Mar. 23-April 1, 2021.
The University of Jamestown’s Luke Shekeryk clubbed three home runs and collected five RBIs to help the Jimmies get a 10-6 win over Concordia College in the first game of a double header on Saturday, April 9, at Jack Brown Stadium.
The Jimmies started the game on fire, with Xander Orejudos hitting a double that the centerfielder Kyle Berg lost in the sun, and was brought home by a Tanner Shepard single to take a 1-0 lead. The next batter was Luke Shekeryk, who smashed a ball over the right field fence causing the assembled Jimmies football players to explode in excitement with the Jimmies going up 3-0.
The Bulldogs got one back in the top of the second thanks to a Tanner Tompkins homerun to cut the deficit to 3-1.
The Jimmies punched back in the bottom half of the inning, with Kendall Yackley hitting a bloop single to bring Quade Peters home all the way from second to make it 4-1. The Jimmies scratched another across on a double steal with the catcher, Ben Berg’s throw sailing into center field. Shepard hit a single to left field that was overrun by the right fielder, Candor, to make it 6-1. The Jimmies would add another one in the second on a Tayler Cullen single to push the lead out to 7-1.
In the top of the third, the Bulldogs’ Keaton Candor hit a two-run shot to cut the deficit to 7-3. In the bottom of the fourth, Shekeryk got a hold of his second of the day and sent it over the right-center field fence to push his team’s lead out to 9-3.
The score would stay that way until the sixth, when the Bulldogs’ Ben Berg hit a ball over the right field fence to cut the deficit to 9-6.
In the bottom of the sixth, Shekeryk flicked his bat at a ball and pushed it over the right field fence to push the Jimmies lead to 10-6.
Shekeryk said that his ability to hit his third home run of the day came from his ability to stay back on the ball.
“Knowing the situation, knowing he was more of an off speed type guy,” Shekeryk said. ”I knew I was going to get a pitch down in the zone, keeping my hands back and my weight back and being able to stay through a pitch.”
In both the first and the second game, Jimmies head coach Tom Hager said that he was proud of the job his pitchers did.
“I think we kept scoring runs and then we got some quality innings out of the bullpen,” Hager said. “Ben Ray came up big, Eric Kessler came up big and I think you could say the same thing about the second game. Certainly, a guy who might get missed is Cam Multer but he came in and did his job and then Hayden Brown was outstanding. He had everything going today and I’m so proud of the job that he did.”
Jimmies grind out game two win
The two biggest story lines that sum up the second game were two lengthy delays and the Jimmies’ Quade Peters. The first delay came as a result of the left field light pole being off, leading to a 17 minute delay. The second delay was as a result of the Jimmies sending Hayden Brown to hit out of order. In the ninth inning, Peters needed all five-foot-eight of his frame to leap up and rob Joey Grabanksi of what would’ve been a game-tying home run in the Jimmies 8-7 win.
“Right off the bat I had a thought that it might stay in just because knowing the wind,” Peters said. “The wind was blowing in. He hit it hard, but wind helped it and once it hung up there I knew I was going to catch it.”
The second game was a back and forth affair with five ties and three lead changes.
“So proud of how they kept fighting,” Hager said. “It was 16 innings of quality baseball and we fought the entire 16 innings.”
The Jimmies (18-17, 7-7) opened the scoring in the bottom of the second when Tristan Madison hit a solo home run over the right field fence to put the Jimmies up 1-0.
The Bulldogs (23-10-1, 12-4) tied the game up at one in the top of the third on a single from Grabanski to score Ty Nekoliczak. The Jimmies had a big bottom of the third, with an RBI single from Brown and a two run single from Sansores pushing the Jimmies out in front 4-1.
In the top of the fourth, Nekoliczak smacked a ball down the left field line out of the reach of the diving Cullen allowing two runs to score to cut the deficit to 4-3. The next batter was Jayden Adams who grounded to the shortstop, Yackley, allowing Tompkins to score and tie the game up. Following that, Candor stepped to the plate and hit a bloop single to right to give his team a 5-4 lead.
Shepard continued his big day in the bottom half of the inning splitting the outfielders for a run scoring double to tie the game up at five.
The Bulldogs retook the lead in the sixth on a throw from Orejudos that got past Shepard, allowing Berg to score.
The Jimmies immediately responded when Andrew Kupec popped up a ball to the left fielder, Grabanski, who had it hit his glove and drop, bringing home Peters to make it 6-6. The Jimmies retook the lead when Kendall Yackley scurried home on a Jacob Lycan wild pitch to go up 7-6.
After the lighting delay, the Bulldogs’ Jaidan Quinn hit a single to tie the game up at seven. After the out of order hitter was figured out, Cullen would push his team back in front with a single to make it 8-7.
The win is the Jimmies sixth in a row, which makes Kendall Yackley say that he and his teammates are hitting their stride at this point in the season.
“I think so yeah, we’ve won our last six in a row,” Yackley said. “We’ve been kind of waiting for this to happen and I feel like this is the time it’s starting to get going.”
The Jimmies remain home at 1 p.m. on Sunday, April 10, when they host Morningside. The Bulldogs are back in action at 1 p.m. on Friday, April 15, when they host Doane.
CUNE 6, UJ 10
CUNE: 0 1 2 0 0 3 0 6 8 2
UJ: 3 4 0 2 0 1 X 10 14 1
UJ: Tanner Shepard RBI single, Xander Orejudos scores
UJ: Luke Shekeryk 2 run HR, Shepard scores
CUNE: Tanner Tompkins solo HR
UJ: Kendall Yackley RBI single, Quade Peters scores
UJ: Shepard RBI single, Orejudos scores
CUNE: Keaton Candor 2 run HR, Jayden Adams scores
UJ: Shekeryk 2 run HR, Orejudos scores
CUNE: Ben Berg 3 run HR, Jaidan Quinn, Anderson Xapasos score
UJ: Shekeryk solo HR
WP: Trei Hough (2-1), LP: Christian Gutierrez (3-1)
CUNE 7, UJ 8
CUNE: 0 0 1 4 0 1 1 0 0–7 9 2
UJ: 0 1 3 1 0 2 0 1 X–8 7 2
UJ: Tristan Madison solo HR
CUNE: Joey Grabanski RBI single, Ty Nekoliczak scores
UJ: Hayden Brown RBI single, Orejudos scores
UJ: Sansores 2 RBI single, Tayler Cullen, Shekeryk score
CUNE: Nekoliczak 2 RBI double, Berg, Quinn score
CUNE: Adams RBI groundout, Tompkins scores
CUNE: Candor RBI single, Nekoliczak scores
UJ: Shepard RBI double, Orejudos scores
UJ: Andrew Kupec reaches on an error, Peters scores, unearned
UJ: Yackley scores on a wild pitch
CUNE: Quinn RBI single, Grabanski scores, unearned
UJ: Cullen RBI single, Arritola scores
WP: Hayden Brown (2-0), LP: Shane Whittaker (3-1)