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story.lead_photo.caption Missouri American Legion State Tournament logo

BALLWIN — The Jefferson City Post 5 Freshmen were one out from a first-round win in the Missouri American Legion A State Tournament.

But the bottom of the seventh inning belonged to Eureka Post 177.

Eureka scored five runs in the seventh, overcoming a four-run deficit to beat Jefferson City 6-5.

Both teams scored a run in the first inning, with Conner Bax scoring on a groundout by Colten Bryan for Post 5.

Jefferson City took the lead in the second inning, as Kase Winegar hit a leadoff double and later scored on a pop-up double play. Post 5 added to its lead in the third with Bryan and Justin Atnip hitting back-to-back doubles and Matthew Robertson following with an RBI single to make the score 4-1.

The score stayed the same until the seventh, when Bax hit a leadoff single, stole second base and scored on Jake Hagner's double.

Post 5 pitcher Cody Pickett cruised through five innings. Eureka loaded the bases with one out in the sixth, but Pickett escaped the jam with a strikeout and a flyout to end the inning.

Eureka had six of its 10 hits in the bottom of the seventh. Pickett struck out the first batter he faced that inning, but Post 177 answered with three consecutive hits, closing the gap to 5-3.

Ty Kiesling relieved Pickett on the mound. Eureka scored another run on a wild pitch, before a ground out put Post 5 one out from getting a win. However, after a two-out walk, Post 177 answered with a game-tying single and a game-winning double to complete the comeback.

Easton Stuckenschnieder, Hager and Atnip each had one single and one double, while Bax finished with a pair of singles for Post 5, which tallied 13 hits.

In 6 1/3 innings, Pickett allowed four runs on seven hits with three walks and six strikeouts. Kiesling gave up two runs on three hits and one walk in one-third of an inning.

In Wednesday's other first-round action, Kirkwood Post 156 defeated Washington Post 218 7-4 and Jackson Post 158 routed Elsberry Post 226 14-4. Ste. Genevieve Post 150 received a first-round base in the seven-team tournament.

The Post 5 Freshmen (11-5-1) will play Elsberry in an elimination game at 12:30 p.m. today.

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