Final: Limestone 6, Pekin 5
Summary: Pekin got on the board early in the regular season finale against Limestone in a Mid-Illini baseball game Wednesday night. Michael Dickey (2-for-4) and Karson Thomas (2-for-4) each picked up multiple hits for Pekin. Limestone stormed back in the fourth inning, plating two runs to cut the Dragon lead in half. Undaunted, Pekin answered the bell in the sixth inning with a run to extend the lead to three runs. In the bottom of the sixth, Limestone pushed four runs across to take its first lead of the game. Brady Sevier got the start on the mound, allowing four runs but only two of them were earned thanks to four Dragon errors. Nick Campbell pitched the sixth inning, allowing two runs, but none were earned. Tanner Rhoades threw a complete game with seven strikeouts for Limestone.
Down to the wire: Limestone and Morton were down to the wire for the Mid-Illini Conference championship. A Morton loss and a Limestone win would have forced a tie for the conference crown. However, Morton’s nine-inning win over Washington secured the championship.
Helping his cause: Sevier went 1-for-2 at the plate with a pair of RBIs and a walk for Pekin.
Errors: Pekin committed four errors on the day compared to two from Limestone. The errors in the seventh inning helped spark the Limestone rally.
Quote: “We let (Rhoades) off the hook. Rhoades is one of their better pitchers,” Pekin head coach Larry Davis said. “We had a great opportunity to go right back at him and try to go get six or seven ourself.”
Play-in to play-on: Next up for Pekin is a play-in game at 4:30 p.m. Monday against Danville in the first round of the IHSA Class 4A Alton Regional. The winner travels to Alton on Wednesday to continue play against O’Fallon.
Familiar foe: Monday’s game will be the third consecutive season Danville travels to Pekin for the play-in game. Pekin won both games by a total of two runs.
Quote: “The last two years we played them have been one run games. They’re not worried about coming to our place. They’re not worried about us. They’re probably tired of losing to us. It doesn’t matter that the next person gets O’Fallon (the No. 1-seed).”
Records: Pekin 9-21, 3-11; Limestone 24-7, 12-3