Eleven Lorain County Hot Stove teams — three in Class H and four each in Classes G and F — won district championships Sunday to earn Lorain Regional semifinal berths.
In addition, three Class EE teams won regional quarterfinals and advanced to semifinal games.
Five regional champions — one each in Classes H, G and F and two in Class EE – will advance to the state Final Four in Alliance on Aug. 2-3.
In a game matching unbeaten Class F (ages 13-14) teams, Columbia Station J&J Greenhouses got a two-hit, 12-strikeout performance out of Joe Weber to roll to a 12-1 mercy-rule victory over Spencer American Legion Post 608.
Weber spotted Spencer a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning before he and his teammates struck for five runs in the bottom of the inning. A two-run, ground-rule double and three singles played big roles in the comeback.
After Weber struck out the side in the second, the winners upped their lead to 7-1 after their first two second-inning batters grounded out. A double and two singles, along with an error, did the damage.
Two singles, a hit batter and another Spencer error made it a 9-1 game after three innings. Weber struck out the side again in the fourth before a two-run triple fueled a three-run rally for the winners.
Weber walked Spencer’s leadoff batter in the fifth before recording two swinging strikeouts. After he hit a batter, he caught the last Post 608 batter looking for his 12th strikeout. With that, the 10-run rule was invoked.
“That first-inning comeback was nice to see,” Columbia Station (23-0) manager Craig Heidinger said. “Our boys know what it takes to do things like that. They’re a physically tough bunch and are peaking at the right time.”
“My fastball was my best pitch in this game,” Weber said. “My location was excellent. My curve and my change-up also were effective at times. I’m going to continue to work on my off-speed pitches as I get ready for high school.”
James Suvak cracked a double and had a single and two RBIs for the winners. Brandon Heidinger had two singles and two RBIs, while Connor Jenny had two singles.
“We gave them too many extra outs,” said Spencer manager Duane Morgan, whose team leaves the tournament trail with a 19-1 record. “They hit the ball well and were opportunistic about what they did.
“We can’t forget how good a season we had. I’m very happy with it. I didn’t know what to expect after we won only three or four games last year.”
Caithaml keys Cavanaugh
Curtis Caithaml’s two-run homer in the top of the fifth inning gave Midview North Cavanaugh Electric a lead it wouldn’t surrender in a 16-11 win over the Spencer Pirates in a Class H
(9-10) game. The 11th straight win for Cavanaugh sends the team into the regional tournament with a 16-4 record.
Caithaml, a left-handed batter, uncorked his home run to the opposite field. It was an inside-the-park homer as he raced around the bases when the ball rolled to the fence.
“That home run broke things open for us,” said Cavanaugh manager Mike Caithaml, Curtis’ father. “This was a total team effort and an awesome job.”
Broadwater calms Storm
Wellington Hydro Tube’s Devin Broadwater carried a no-hitter into the fifth inning before settling for a one-hitter in a 17-0 mercy-rule win over the Medina Storm in Class EE (15-16) action.
Broadwater had lost his bid for a perfect game earlier as he walked two batters and hit another.
Jon Shumaker, Jake O’Connor and Steve Spangenburg each doubled for the winners.
Lorain District Championships
CLASS H (AGES 9-10)
Medina Blaze 7, Valley City Smith Barney/CITI 1
Midview North Cavanaugh Electric 16, Spencer Pirates 11
Columbia Viccarone 11, North Ridgeville Stars 8
CLASS G (AGES 11-12)
Wellington 2, South Amherst Quarry Monsters 1
Columbia Station Halo 3, North Ridgeville Rockers 0
Midview North #1 10, Oberlin Pfeiffer 0
Valley City Miller Farms 15, Grafton Jegs 1
CLASS F (AGES 13-14)
Wellington Warriors 14, Medina Diamondbacks 1
Firelands Fierce 11, New London 8
Medina Snappers 11, Belden Amish Swings 2
Columbia Station J&J Greenhouses 12, Spencer American Legion Post 608 1
Lorain Regional Quarterfinals
CLASS EE (AGES 15-16)
Vermilion Aramys 12, Belden Pickering Hill 0
Medina Tornadoes 4, Olmsted Falls Bulldogs 2
Wellington Hydro Tube 17, Medina Storm 0
Lorain Regional Semifinal Pairings
(ALL GAMES ON GRAFTON-D)
Medina Blaze vs. Midview North Cavanaugh Electric (10 a.m.)
Columbia Viccarne vs. Ravenna District #1 winner (1:30)
(ALL GAMES ON GRAFTON-C)
Midview North #1 vs. Valley City Miler Farms (10:30)
Wellington vs. Columbia Station Halo (1:30)
(ALL GAMES ON GRAFTON-B)
Medina Snappers vs. Columbia Station J & J Greenhouses (11)
Wellington Warriors vs. Firelands Fierce (2)
(ALL GAMES ON GRAFTON-A)
Valley City Buckeye Bucks vs. Spencer Kostecki Excavating (9:30)
Avon Lake Shoremen vs. Medina Tornadoes (11)
Vermilion Crew vs. Vermilion Aramys (2:30)
Columbia Station Red Wagon vs. Wellington Hydro Tube (5)