On Tuesday, Jefferson and Turner, ranked #3 and #4 statewide respectively in the preseason coaches' polls in Division 2, played in a low-scoring, well-played affair at Jefferson, won by the Eagles 3-2 over the Turner Trojans.
On Thursday, both coaches joked before the game that they expected the rematch to be a little more high-scoring.
That prediction became truth early on. In the top of the first inning, Jefferson got leadoff back-to-back singles from Ryan Brost and Brandon Laesch, who scored when Nathan Hebbe smacked his second home run of the year on a laser shot to left field to make it a quick 3-0 lead for the Eagles.
After Turner went quietly in the bottom of the first, Jefferson added another run in the top of the second when Avery Clark reached base on a strikeout, followed by a drawn walk by Zack Peterson and a sacrifice fly by Aldair Rameriz to score Clark. After an inning and a half, Jefferson had a 4-0 lead and knocked Turner starter Mitchell Seager out of the game with no outs in the second inning.
The turning point of the game came in the bottom of the second, when the Turner Trojans made their push. Cory Walker led the inning off with a bang, doubling to deep left center. Drew Ries reached on error and Adrian Estrada got on base when Jefferson tried to hold Walker at third from scoring. With the bases loaded and nobody out, Kaleb Schoville drew a walk to bring in Turner's first run, with still nobody out in the bottom of the second, now trailing 4-1.
After a strikeout for the first out of the inning, Preston Viens, who took over for Seager on the mound in the second inning, also drew a walk to score a run, and cut Jefferson's lead down to 4-2 in the bottom of the second. Back to the top of the order, Ryan Hughes drilled a two-run double to tie the game at 4-4.
Seager was intentionally walked to load the bases for Hunter Waldsmith, who promptly deposited the ball in almost the same spot as Hebbe's home run for Jefferson over the left-field fence for a grand slam and Turner's first lead of the game, 8-4 in the bottom of the second. Jefferson brought in Ian Drays for relief and got out of the second inning without any further damage.
A leadoff single for Justin Draeger was cashed in on a fielder's choice groundout by Nick Simdon to trim the lead to 8-5 in favor of Turner, but Jefferson couldn't do anything more in the top of the third.
Turner would add some insurance runs in the bottom of the fourth after the teams traded scoreless innings, with RBI singles by Mitchell Seager and Cory Walker boosting the Trojans' lead to 10-5.
After a scoreless fifth by both teams, Jefferson made their rally try in the top of the sixth with the top of the order coming up. With two on for Hebbe and only one out, he punched through a shot into shallow outfield to earn his fourth RBI of the game and 14th of the season, and two batters later, Sam Cincotta hit a two-run double to make it 10-8 Turner. Jefferson couldn't get anything more in the inning.
Turner's Preston Viens, on in relief since the second inning, began the top of the seventh with a strikeout. He hit the next batter he faced, and then Jefferson's #1 hitter in the order, Brost, followed up with a single to put runners at first and second with only one out. Laesch grounded into a 6-5 fielder's choice to force out the lead runner, and Ian Drays was the last man standing, representing the go-ahead run for Jefferson. However, he grounded out, and Turner won 10-8.
-Turner's #1-#4 hitters combined for seven hits, including a pair of doubles and a grand slam, with eight of the team's runs batted in
-Turner's Preston Viens matched his season total for strikeouts coming in with four in this game
-Jefferson's leadoff hitter reached base in five of the seven innings, while Turner went four-for-six in this department
-Reaction from Turner coach Jeff Clowes at the end of this article
Final: Turner 10, Jefferson 8
WP: Preston Viens (6IP, 4R, 5BB, 6H, 1HB, 4K)
LP: Aldair Rameriz (1 1/3IP, 8R, 3BB, 4H, 1K)
Turner: 3B Hunter Waldsmith 1-3, HR, 4 RBI, R; SS Ryan Hughes 2-4, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 R, 2 SB; LF Cory Walker 2-3, 2B, RBI, R; P/2B Mitchell Seager 2-3, 2 R, RBI, BB, K
Jefferson: CF Ryan Brost 3-4, R, BB; 3B Nathan Hebbe 2-4, HR, 4 RBI, 2 R; 2B Sam Cincotta 2-4, 2B, 2 RBI
Time Of Game: 2:12
First Pitch: 4:41 p.m.
Weather: 71 degrees, clear
Location: Turner High School, Beloit, Wis.
*The Big 1070 will cover Division 2 #5 Columbus at #8 Evansville on Monday, April 30 in a non-conference match-up.