Post 658 advances to Region 8

Youngsville is moving on, too.

Post 658 swept the first two games of a best-of-three Warren County Senior American Legion Baseball League playoff series against Corry Northwest Savings Bank over the weekend to become the second Warren County representative in the Region 8 tournament, which begins June 20 at Northwestern High School in Albion.

Youngsville joins regular-season champion Warren Post 135 in the region tournament after defeating Corry 6-1 on Saturday at the Ballpark in Columbus, and 5-4 in walk-off fashion Sunday at Davis Street Field in Youngsville.

Cory Craig tossed a gem in game one Saturday, striking out 13 batters and allowing just two hits in nine innings for the complete-game victory.

Youngsville got all the offense it would need in the first inning when Aaron Hoover doubled to start the rally, and came around to score when Craig doubled in the very next at-bat. Kyle Hunt then made it a two run lead with an RBI single to score Craig before Northwest Savings Bank could escape the inning.

Hoover extended the Post 658 lead in the top of the fifth inning, knocking in three runs with a bases loaded double to make it a 5-0 advantage.

Corry’s Dylan Silvis put his team on the board in the home half of the sixth with an RBI single, but Post 658’s Kyle Hunt matched it with a run scoring single of his own in the ninth. Craig and the Youngsville defense were able to hold off Corry in the bottom of the inning to claim the 6-1 win.

Hoover was the hero in Sunday’s game two, after a walk-off single scored a pair of runs to clinch the series with a 5-4 win at Davis Street Field. Trailing 4-2 heading into the bottom of the ninth, Jake Marino drew a bases loaded walk to bring in Caleb Linkerhof, and Hoover drove in Shane Arford and Thomas Henry as teammates flooded the field in celebration.

Jacob Linkerhof went all nine innings on the hill for Youngsville, allowing three runs in the first inning and blanking the visitors for seven straight before surrendering a single run in the top of the ninth.

After falling behind in the opening frame, Post 658 used an RBI double from Craig to cut the early deficit to a pair of runs. The lead was shortened once again in the third inning when Marino was given home after a Corry overthrow skipped out of play following a Hoover fly ball.

From there, the two teams traded scoreless innings as Linkerhof and Corry’s Dustin Silvis battled it out on the mound, with Northwest Savings Bank finally breaking the streak in the ninth with an RBI single from Brody Wood.

With Silvis moved from pitcher to third base to start the ninth, Youngsville struck with a lead off double from Caleb Linkerhof, and loaded the bases when Arford was hit by a pitch and Henry walked with no outs. With Post 658 threatening, Corry turned back to Silvis, who walked in Linkerhof and surrendered the game ending hit to Hoover.

Hoover’s big weekend included six RBI on three hits while Craig and Marino each had four hits in Youngsville’s two wins. Hunt had a two hit game in Corry on Saturday, and Ryan Williams added a pair of hits in Sunday’s game.

Game one

Youngsville 200 030 001 – 6 11

Northwest 000 001 000 – 1 2

2b-Aaron Hoover (Y) 2, Cory Craig (Y), Dylan Silvis (N). WP-Craig. LP-Joe Sonntag.

Game two

Northwest 300 000 001 – 4 9

Youngsville 101 000 003 – 5 7

2b-Cory Craig (Y), Aaron Hoover (Y), Caleb Linkerhof (Y). WP-Jacob Linkerhof. LP-Will Gerould.