Prep district baseball: P.K. Yonge cruises over Chiefland to win title
Published: Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, May 2, 2010 at 12:00 a.m.
TRENTON — The continuation of Friday night's suspended District 5-2A championship game due to inclement weather went as P.K. Yonge baseball coach Brian Simmons hoped it would on Saturday.
The Blue Wave, already ahead 4-0 with the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the fourth when action resumed, wasted no time in putting the game out of reach.
Josh Stewart hit the first pitch of the afternoon for a two-run single, while Tyler Hagin drilled a three-run double to cap P.K. Yonge's eight-run fourth inning as the Blue Wave rolled Chiefland 11-4.
The top three hitters in the lineup, Manny Kurki-Fox, Stewart and Ryan Thombs, went a combined 6-for-8, with four runs and six RBIs as the Blue Wave claimed their first district championship since 2002. P.K. Yonge, which reached the FHSAA Class 2A state semifinals that season, will host Jacksonville Trinity Christian in a Class 2A, Region 2 quarterfinal on Tuesday. The Indians (18-7), who received two doubles, a run and an RBI from Adam Burton, will travel to Jacksonville Providence for their first-round game.
“It was worth the wait, I didn't sleep too well last night,” said Simmons, whose club finished 19-0 against district competition this spring. “That is exactly how I dreamt it up, that we'd put up a bunch right there (in the fourth inning). That was real nice, it made the day go a lot easier.”
Stewart's two-run single to left field quickly made it 6-0, before Thombs grounded out, while Kai Simmons walked. Sean Kamhoot singled in a pair of runs with a hit to right field, before a walk by Justin Landers loaded the bases.
That was the last batter that Indians pitcher Timmy Reidy faced as Kody Plemmons, Chiefland's fourth hurler of the contest, took the mound. Hagin greeted him with a bases-clearing double that went over center fielder Clenton Wasson's head and rolled all the way to the fence. Three runs came in, which gave the Blue Wave (24-4) a comfortable 11-0 cushion.
The Indians scored a pair of runs in the fifth and in the seventh against Stewart, who relieved starter Sam Mullins, to provide the final margin.
Mullins (7-1) earned the win with four shutout innings of work on Friday night, giving up one hit, while striking out three and walking one. Wasson (5-1), the area's leading hitter who started the week at .629, finished 0-for-3 at the plate and took the loss as the Indians' starting pitcher on Friday. Marquise Green also had two hits for Chiefland.
Thombs, who started the tournament second in the area with a .573 batting average, finished 2-for-3 and knocked in two runs. On the final play of the game, he fielded a ground ball at third base and threw out Josh Martinez, which resulted in a reserved Blue Wave celebration.
But shortly after the game, two P.K. Yonge players doused Brian Simmons with the celebratory Gatorade shower.
“It feels really good, there is nothing better than Gatorade on your back,” said Simmons on the warm day. “That means you are doing something right.”
P.K. Yonge will be making their third straight regional-playoff appearance, while for the Indians, their season is still alive as well. Chiefland will be making its first regional-playoff appearance since 2007 on Tuesday.
“I am proud of the effort, our kids battled the whole game,” Chiefland coach Kyle Parnell said. “We got down early and continued to fight and played hard the whole game.”