Prep Baseball Report

No. 15 Edwardsville takes No. 14 O'Fallon deep, in six

By Drake Skleba
Senior Writer

O’FALLON - In just his second game appearance of the season, Edwardsville junior SS Jordan Hovey made an immediate impression on everyone present at Tuesday’s Southwestern Conference showdown between rivals Edwardsville and O’Fallon.

Hovey hit the second pitch of the game from O’ Fallon senior right-hander Tyler Herbert (3-2) over the right-field fence for a quick 1-0 Tiger lead. After Herbert retired the next two Tiger batters, junior Aaron Jackson launched a bomb that soared over the right-field fence. Ignited by their quick start, No. 15 Edwardsville went on to crush No. 14 O’ Fallon 11-1 in six innings at beautiful Blazier Field. With the win, the Tigers took over sole possession of first-place in the SWC.

The bottom of the Edwardsville (12-2; 4-0) batting order set the table for Hovey and the Tigers in the second inning. No.8 batter senior Jacob Fisher singled and No. 9 batter Collin Clayton doubled to bring up that man Hovey again. Once again, the talented junior launched another baseball in the direction of US 50 and a local Dairy Queen, beyond the right field fence for a huge three-run homer.

“This was just a great win for us,” said Hovey. “Everyone played so well and Alex pitched a great game for us. It’s great to be playing again, and I had a big day but without my teammates I couldn't have done it.’

Tiger senior RF Austin Werner followed with a bomb of his own to give the Tigers a 6-0 lead.
“I was able to get a 3-0 fastball and take it out,” said Werner. “It really felt great to take it out of here because I had really been in a bad slump the last couple of games.”
Werner left the game in the fourth after beating out a double-play attempt at first base. He tweaked his hamstring and he said he will be ready go for the Tigers next game Thursday.

On the mound for the Tigers, senior right-hander Alex Meyers went the distance, scattering seven hits and allowing but one run. Meyers (6-0) picked up his only two punchouts of the game, striking out the final two O’Fallon batters to finish the game in the bottom of the sixth.
“It was such a great day to pitch,” said Meyers. “Jordan and Aaron homered in the first inning to get me the lead and my defense was outstanding behind me. It was amazing all of the great plays made today. We are really happy with our start to the season. We have to continue to work hard and continue to win games.”

Sophomore Jake Garella chipped in with a pair of singles and an RBI for the first-place Tigers.

“It was important that we started quickly, hitting the ball today, against such a quality pitcher,”
said Edwardsville head coach Tim Funkhouser. “Jordan and Aaron’s homers were huge for us in the first inning. Jordan last year was just an average player who, with hard work, has made himself faster and stronger. That certainly was apparent today at the plate, with very rigorous off-season work. Alex has been great on the mound for us all season. Once again, he pitched another fine game for us.”

O’Fallon (12-2; 3-1) falls into a second-place tie in the SWC with Belleville West (9-5; 3-1). The two clubs will meet on the West Side of Belleville on Thursday at 4:30.

“Hats off to the Edwardsville batters,” said O’Fallon head coach Jason Portz. “They had great approaches at the plate and were very aggressive. This is just one loss. We will be fine and hopefully we can bounce back against a fine Belleville West club on Thursday.”

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