Alex Kendall helped keep the season alive for St. John’s Prep Monday afternoon.
The Johnnies pitcher threw four innings, struck out nine batters and allowed just two hits as the Johnnies defeated Braham 10-0 in five innings in a Section 5-2A elimination game at Joe Faber Field.
He was also 1-for-2 at the plate with a double and two runs scored.
“Alex was able to get ahead in the count a lot today,” said St. John’s Prep coach Tom Grandy, whose team is now 15-7 overall. “He kept their hitters off-balance and things just worked out.”
The Johnnies — who have not advanced this far in a decade — face Royalton in an elimination game at 5 p.m. today at Joe Faber Field.
The winner of that game advances to the championship round against Browerville beginning at 5 p.m. Thursday.
Browerville beat Royalton 2-1 in a winner’s bracket game Monday and needs to win just once Thursday to advance to state.
Royalton or St. John’s Prep would have to win twice.
“The key (against Royalton) will just be throwing strikes,” said Grandy, whose team was 2-0 against the Royals in the regular season. “We didn’t allow any walks today and we played clean defense. If we can stay away from giving up walks, it’s usually a good sign.”
Caz Novak was 2-for-3 with four RBI and a run scored to lead the Johnnies offensively. St. John’s Prep scored four runs in both the second and fourth innings.
Browerville 2, Royalton 1
Brandon Lattimer’s single to right field scored Tyler Sieben in the top of the seventh inning but Royalton’s rally fell short against top-seed Browerville in the winners bracket final at Joe Faber Field.
Browerville starter Austin Host struck out 12 and carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning but Cody Stange broke it up with a single.
The Royals (11-13 overall) finished with three hits.
Royalton’s Matt Silbernick struck out six and held the Tigers (21-2) to four hits.