Portagers fall to Frankfort in district final

Onekama's Wade Sedlar delivers during the Portagers' 7-2 win over Mesick in the Division 4 district semifinals on Saturday. (Kye Kotecki/For the News Advocate)

Onekama’s Wade Sedlar delivers during the Portagers’ 7-2 win over Mesick in the Division 4 district semifinals on Saturday. (Kyle Kotecki/For the News Advocate)

By KYLE KOTECKI

For the News Advocate

ONEKAMA — Onekama baseball was defeated by second-ranked Frankfort in their Division 4 district final Saturday, falling 8-1 at home.

“They’re an outstanding team,” Onekama baseball coach John Neph said of Frankfort. “Our kids made a couple key double plays. We battled the whole way through, but we didn’t do enough today to beat a very very tough team.”

Jack Morrow, Frankfort’s pitching ace who has committed to play at Albion College, gave up just three hits and two walks while recording 11 strikeouts.

“Jack Morrow is a fantastic pitcher,” Neph said. “He mixes his pitches well. We hit some balls hard and got some guys on base. Had some chances — a few — but they got us out. We just couldn’t get across more.”

The Portagers’ lone run came in the fourth inning when Austin Harper drove in Jacob Mauntler with a sacrifice fly.

Lucas Mauntler finished 2-for-4 with a double and Jacob Mauntler finished 1-for-2 with a stolen base.

“It was a tough game,” said Frankfort baseball coach Mike Zimmerman. “Onekama battled us hard the whole game. Every time we thought we had a chance to put them away they made great defensive plays and kept battling back on us. We were just fortunate to get away with the win.”

Harper was the starting pitcher, allowing six runs, five earned, nine hits and four walks while striking out two. Jayden DeWitt pitched in relief, giving up two earned runs, four hits and three walks while tallying two strikeouts.

The loss put an end to the Portagers’ season, one that Neph wishes he could have enjoyed for a little longer.

“I’m not disappointed in the least with my guys,” Neph said. “I wanted to see the season keep going because I love working with these guys, but it’s got to end sometime. One more week would have been great, but that’s where we are now. I’m just thankful for everything that the guys did for us this year.

“… I have no regrets with how the guys played,” he continued. “Looking forward to moving forward. Going to really miss Jayden DeWitt and Jacob Mauntler, our senior leaders, and what they’ve done for us over the past four years. They’ve been great players for us.”

Onekama faced Mesick in the semifinals earlier in the day and beat the Bulldogs 7-2.

Wade Sedlar took the bump in the semifinal, allowing one earned run, three hits and two walks while striking out seven. DeWitt pitched in relief, giving up one run and two walks while recording two strikeouts.

“Mesick made a lot of progress this year,” Neph said. “We were in a close game all the way through and we were able to push some runs across and secure the win.”

DeWitt batted 1-for-3 with an RBI and Ben Acton chipped in by going 1-for-2 and scoring a run. Jacob Mauntler was a terror on the basepaths and scored twice, reaching base by drawing two walks and being hit by a pitch.

Onekama finished the 2018 campaign with a record of 13-7.

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