Chippewa Hills, Big Rapids baseball share CSAA title

CSAA CHAMPIONSHIP: Chippewa Hills’ Brett Walcutt pitches against Big Rapids on Tuesday during Game 1 of a CSAA doubleheader. (Pioneer photo/Ryan Zuke)

CSAA CHAMPIONSHIP: Chippewa Hills’ Brett Walcutt pitches against Big Rapids on Tuesday during Game 1 of a CSAA doubleheader. (Pioneer photo/Ryan Zuke)

REMUS — Chippewa Hills and Big Rapids’ baseball teams had a conference title on the line during their doubleheader on Tuesday.

The Warriors edged the Cardinals 9-8 in the first game to give both teams an 8-3 record in the Central State Activities Association Gold Division, setting up a winner-take-all Game 2. However, after eight innings in the nightcap with the score tied 5-5 and daylight dwindling, both coaches decided to call the game and be co-champions.

It’s the Warriors seventh conference title in the past 10 years, and the first for Big Rapids since 2008, according to coach Sam Daugherty.

CO-CHAMPIONS: Big Rapids’ Aaron Repke makes contact against Chippewa Hills on Tuesday. The Cardinals and Warriors shared the CSAA title after both teams finished 8-3-1 in league play. (Pioneer photo/Ryan Zuke)

CO-CHAMPIONS: Big Rapids’ Aaron Repke makes contact against Chippewa Hills on Tuesday. The Cardinals and Warriors shared the CSAA title after both teams finished 8-3-1 in league play. (Pioneer photo/Ryan Zuke)

Daugherty and Warriors coach Ben Wright each said both teams were deserving of the title.

“This one is pretty special because we have a lot of young kids, a lot of first-year varsity players,” Warriors coach Ben Wright said. “We have grown a lot from the beginning of the season. But give Big Rapids a lot of credit. Tonight was an absolute slugfest and both teams made some great defensive plays.”

Daugherty said, “For us, one of our goals was a conference title, even though we finished fifth a year ago. I have to give our guys a lot of credit. They had to go to Chippewa Hills and play a really good team. Both games were back and forth and neither team would give in. Both teams battled until the last out.”

In the opener, the Warriors jumped out to an 8-3 lead after five innings, but the Cardinals crawled back into it with a three-run sixth. Dakota Sanders had a two-run double with two outs to cut the deficit to 9-8 in the top of the seventh, but Chippewa Hills pitcher Brett Walcutt induced a ground ball from the next batter to seal it.

Sanders had two hits and three RBIs in Game 1 and three hits and a RBI in Game 2.

“Dakota was just exceptional,” Daugherty said. “He played hard every inning and showed tremendous leadership.”

Keenan McIntyre had three hits in the opener.

For the Warriors, senior Slade Todd had three hits, including a triple in the opener, and two more hits in the nightcap.

“Slade is a tremendous athlete,” Wright said. “When you go into a big game like this, guys like Slade excel. Did I expect him to get five hits? No, but he did and that doesn’t surprise me. He wants to be successful, wants to compete.”

RJ Simon earned the win in the opener, while Cole Dangler had three hits. Cade Schafer had three hits and three RBIs in the nightcap, while Simon recorded two hits.

Chippewa Hills (19-10-1) plays Wednesday at Shepherd, while Big Rapids (15-14-1) plays Thursday at Manistee.

Big Rapids, Chippewa Hills softball split

REMUS – Big Rapids’ softball team defeated Chippewa Hills 6-4 on Tuesday in the first game of a doubleheader, before the Warriors responded with a 10-7 victory in Game 2.

Brooke Doerr earned the win in the opener, while teammate Maddie Tassoni was 3 for 3 with a RBI. Allyson Galbraith doubled, singled and drove in a run, while Emma Graves had a hit and two RBIs.

Galbraith also had two hits in the nightcap, as did Alexis Lyman. Kailey Jones had a hit and two RBIs, while Crystal Brinker had a double.

For the Warriors, Bailey Wilson had two hits in Game 1, while Jessica Earl drove in two.

Earl had three hits in the nightcap, and Wilson recorded two hits. Elle LaLonde had three RBIs, while Sadie Metcalf earned the win, striking out five in seven innings.

VARSITY BASEBALL

Morley Stanwood 4-11, Tri County 5-0

HOWARD CITY – Tom Carey led the Mohawks with two doubles, a single, three RBIs and three runs scored in Game 2 on Tuesday.

Landon Elenbaas earned the win, allowing three hits and striking out four in five innings.

Dayne Edgerly had two hits and a RBI in the nightcap, while Riley Burhans and Jason Ambler each had two hits.

Lucas Elenbaas had two hits and two RBIs in the opener, while Burhans, Ambler and Aiden Nelson each had a double.

Morley Stanwood (18-11) plays a single makeup game Thursday at Holton

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Posted by Ryan Zuke

Ryan is the sports editor for the Big Rapids Pioneer, covering local prep sports and Ferris State athletics. He can be contacted at (231) 592-8363 or rzuke@pioneergroup.com.

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