Sports

Tiebreaker gives Juneau, Eagle River semifinal spots at American Legion state baseball tourney

Juneau clawed its way into the semifinals of the American Legion state baseball tournament by turning a game-ending double play to knock off Eagle River 3-2 Sunday at Mulcahy Stadium.

In the day’s only other game, South walloped Dimond 10-0.

Juneau’s victory created a three-way tie in the tournament’s four-team Alyeska Division -- Juneau, Eagle River and Service all finished pool play with 2-1 records (Chugiak, the fourth team in the pool, went 0-3).

The tiebreaker -- fewest runs allowed in games between the three tied teams -- sent Juneau and Eagle River to Monday’s semifinals. Eagle River gave up four runs, Juneau gave up five and Service gave up 15.

In the Denali Division, semifinal berths went to South (3-0 in pool play) and Ketchikan (2-1). Not advancing were Palmer (1-2) and Dimond (0-3).

Monday’s winners will play for the state championship Tuesday at 5:30 p.m.

Juneau 3, Eagle River 2

In a must-win game, Juneau belted four singles to grab a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the sixth inning and turned a game-ending double-play in the top of the seventh. A Juneau loss would have sent Eagle River and Service to the semifinals.

The Midnight Suns trailed 2-1 going into their half of the sixth but pounced on pitcher Noah Lower for consecutive one-out singles by Isaiah Nelson and Oliver Mendoza.

One out later, Gavin Millard singled to drive in the tying run and chase Lower. Brock McCormick touched reliever Josh Thompson for a game-winning single.

Eagle River made noise with one out in the seventh inning when Luke Barch walked and Lower reached base on an error. The threat ended when Grazio Ramos hit into a double play, Juneau’s second of the game.

Lower struck out six and had a one-hitter through five innings. Juneau starter Garrison Lube went five innings, surviving five hits and seven walks, and Kai Schmidt earned the win with two innings of scoreless relief.

Eagle River had baserunners all game long but stranded eight, six of them in scoring position.

South 10, Dimond 0

Reid Brock banged out four hits and Gavin Partch retired the final 12 batters he faced to lead South to a five-inning shutout.

Brock was 4 for 4 with two runs and two RBIs. Seven players scored for the Wolverines, including leadoff batter Kellen Curtis, who crossed the plate three times.

Partch gave up a leadoff single to Dimond’s Garrett Lick at the start of the second inning, but he retired every batter he faced after that to finish with a two-hitter.

Sunday’s scores

Juneau 3, Eagle River 2

South 10, Dimond 0

Monday’s semifinal games

1:15 p.m. -- Juneau (19-6) vs. South (25-2)

4:30 p.m. -- Eagle River (20-8) vs. Ketchikan (15-11)

Tuesday’s game

5:30 p.m. -- Championship

Sponsored