The Varsity Tigers traveled to Farmington on Friday night and then turned around and went back on Saturday for two to play three games in less than 24 hours. The Farmington Wood Bat Classic at Wilson Rozier is always a circled event on the Tiger schedule. The only win of the weekend for Festus would be an exciting and rewarding win on Friday night over Farmington 4-3.
Festus got a strong performance on the mound on Friday night from Senior righty Charlie Pratt. Pratt pitched 6 innings allowed two runs and struck out 8 Farmington Knight hitters. Festus would hang on and win 4-3 but it would take a hit by pitch in the bottom of the 7th to score the walk off win for Festus. Eddie Martin was hit by a pitch and Junior Wyatt Daugherty scored the winning run. The bases would be loaded.
The Tigers would spoil the Knight’s Senior Night event in the process. Senior righty Ryan Reando would pitch the top of the seventh and the Knights would tie the score. Festus would win the game in the bottom of the 7th inning.
Festus got a two rbi game from Sophomore Second baseman-pitcher and catcher Collin Reando. Ryan Reando also had an rbi. Sophomore Cole Wagner, Collin Reando and Charlie Pratt collected the only four hits for Festus.
The Wood Bat proves to be challenging with the smaller diameter barrel and reduced sweet spot and it certainly changes the game significantly. This weekend’s tourney put runs at a premium. Small ball is the name of the game: sac bunts, the hit and run, hitting behind the runner, stolen bases, all are very important. The Tigers shattered 5 wooden bats on jam shots at the plate.
On Saturday, the offense sputtered to score runs and hits were also a tough task. In two games on Saturday, the Tigers collected just four hits. Cole Wagner, a sophomore, had three of them. Festus did get rbis from Cole Wagner, Collin Reando, and Eddie Martin. Senior Shortstop Eddie Martin would collect two rbis.
Stolen bases, the Tigers had a few on the weekend. The Varsity squad collected 8 stolen bases. Wagner led the way with 4 stolen bags.
Pitching: Several Tigers saw work this weekend on Saturday. Senior Zach Baisch, a lefty, pitched 4 innings against Pattonville in the second game. He would strike out 5 and allow just three earned runs. Ryan Reando and Nolan Stafford combined for two innings of work, one each, and they allowed just one earned run. In the early game, the pitching pair of Zach Liles and Collin Reando got the ball. Liles was the starter and relieved by Reando. Reando would pitch 4 2/3 and surrender no runs. Liles would strike out 3 in his effort.
In the end, the Tigers lost the early game to Winfield High School 7-4. Festus would rally in the top of the 7th inning and score two and leave two on. The Tigers also committed four errors in the game. Winfield would collect just 5 hits in the game.
The second game the Tigers lost to Pattonville by the score of 7-2. Pattonville would score two in the second, one in the fourth and three in the fifth and never look back. The Pirates would collect just 5 hits in the game.
The Gritty Gutty Award this week goes to Senior Charlie Pratt and Sophomore Cole Wagner. The Gritty Gutty award goes to a player that demonstrates toughness, hustle, determination, and just pure grit on the field wearing the Festus Tiger uniform.