Chiarodo, Jennings Put Edwardsville Back In 4A State Championship Game

By: Diego Solares
Area Scout, Illinois & Missouri

The first game of the 4A state semifinals pitted the reigning state champion Edwardsville Tigers (31-9) against York (23-15-1).  

It didn’t take the Tigers long to get on the board, as Edwardsville scored five runs in the bottom half of the first inning. Caeleb Copeland (2023; St. Charles CC) belted a double into the left-center gap, scoring Joe Chiarodo (2025) from second for the Tigers’ first run. 

Edwardsville would add another run in the inning on a rundown where the aforementioned Copeland beat out the throw at home. With two outs, senior shortstop Kayden Jennings (2023; Illinois-Springfield) stepped up to the plate and turned one around with authority, lining a screaming three-run home over the left field wall. After the game’s first frame, the Tigers led 5-0. 

York scored their first run of the contest in the top of the fourth. With the bases loaded, junior Paul Reedy (2024) squeaked a single through the right side of the infield to score a run. Chiarodo, the Edwardsville starting pitcher, was able to escape without any further damage. 

The Dukes threatened again in the top of the fifth, but Chiarodo punched out the side to keep York off the board. His day would end after 5 ⅓ innings of work, and the Alabama commit fanned seven, allowing a run on five hits. He ran his fastball up to 91 mph in the second, pitching in the upper-80s, while grabbing swings-and-miss on a tight 74-77 mph that mirrors his fastball’s plane. 

Edwardsville scored two more runs in the bottom of the fifth inning. Andrew Hendrickson (2023) elevated a fly ball to left field for a sacrifice fly, and Jennings singled a run home, adding to his total on the day, and giving the Tigers a 7-1 lead. 

York scored a run in the bottom of the seventh inning, but the Tigers’ held on to win the contest 7-3. Edwardsville will play the winner of Brother Rice and New Trier tomorrow afternoon in the 4A state championship game, while York will draw the loser of that aforementioned contest. 


+ Joe Chiarodo (Edwardsville): 5 1/3 IP, 5 H, ER, 4 BB, 8 K
+ Kayden Jennings (Edwardsville): 2-for-4, 4 RBI, HR, RS
+ Caeleb Copeland (Edwardsville): 1-for-2, RBI, 2B, 2 RS