Maize South is back in the state baseball tournament, only this time with a new destination.
Maize South beat Andale-Garden Plain 17-6 to advance to the Class 4A-I tournament next week. The Mavericks were in the Class 5A tournament last year.
Andale-Garden Plain (18-4) led 3-0 in the first inning on one hit, manufacturing runs after two consecutive hit batters and a two-run single from Parker Herbst.
Maize South (17-5) hitters began seeing the ball better at the plate in the second inning. The Mavericks rapped out 20 hits, including home runsfrom Jordan Maxson, Jack Wagner and Sam Kissane.
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The Mavericks’ five consecutive hits in the second led to a 5-3 lead, highlighted by Bradyn Wiens’ two-run double. The two-out rally started with an RBI single from No. 8 hitter Brett Parke.
“We’ve been asking for the bottom of the order to get themselves on base, so that the top of the order could drive runs in,” Maize South coach Chad Christensen said. “Today, it was done well offensively.”
Andale-Garden Plain didn’t get closer than a run after getting to 5-4 in the bottom of the second.
“Hats off to Maize South,” Andale-Garden Plain coach Chase Boyd said. “They’re a heck of a team and it’s hard to do much when they were producing at the plate like they were.”
Maxson hit a breaking ball low in the zone over the left-field fence for a three-run home run, giving Maize South a 12-5 advantage in the fifth inning. Maxson finished 4 for 5 with five RBIs.
Kissane (3 for 4, 3 RBIs) crushed a two-run homer in the sixth inning, followed three pitches later by Wagner’s blast.
“I got down 0-2 and I was thinking he was going to throw me a little curveball,” Wagner said. “But he gave me a fastball and I like those fastballs, so I just drove it.”
Wagner was 3 for 5 with two RBIs from the leadoff spot.
“We’ve played well the last five games,” Christensen said. “We’ve pitched it well and today we struggled a little, but our bats came alive and helped us.”
17 20 3
6 5 3
W: Bontrager. L: Post. HR: Maize South, Maxson, Kissane, Wagner.