Concordia Lutheran found ways to score when they got on base and got an heroic performance from relief pitcher Trace Sanchez to beat St. Thomas 5-0 in the TAPPS Division 1 Semifinal game. With the win, Concordia advances to the State Championship Game to play Midland Christian, winner of the earlier semifinal game.
Concordia scored 5 runs on just 5 hits. In the 1st inning Sean Fitzpatrick doubled and scored on two infield ground balls. The Crusaders scored 2 runs in the third when Fitzpatrick and Nolan Traeger walked and scored on a error by the St. Thomas centerfielder. They picked up two more runs in the 4th. Eoghan Collins tripled and scored on a Jaxon Daigre single. Daigre stole 2nd base and advanced to 3rd on an errant throw. He then scored on a ground ball by Fitzpatrick.
Jax Trager started the game on the mound for Concordia but left the game with one out in the third with an arm injury. Senior Trace Sanchez came in and finished the final 4.2 innings holding St. Thomas scoreless on 8 hits with 4 Ks. Twice he pitched out of jams including a double play with the bases loaded by 3B Christian Kurtz to end the game.
“There was little to no chance that I would come in to pitch today with Jax on the mound,” Trace explained. “I just had to get ready, do my best and trust the guys behind me.” For his gutsy performance coming in to pitch on short notice, Trace was named the THSB Player of the Game.
Jaxon Daigre 2-3, Run, RBI, SB
Sean Fitzpatric 1-2, 2B, 2 Runs, SB
Trace Sanchez 4.2 IP, 8 hits, 4 Ks, O BB
Jax Traeger 2.1 IP, 1 hit, 0 R, 1 K
Vincent Ori 2-3
Grant Stringer 3-3
Braydan Salinas 2-3
Will Rizzo 6 IP, 6 Hits, 5 Runs, 3 ER, 2 BB, 8 Ks