The People's Tribune

Van-Far Knocks Off Hawks For District Title;

Indians Fall In Sectional To St. Vincent

The district championship momentum carried right into the state sectional game on Monday as Van-Far snagged an early lead over St. Vincent.

The sky was bright and a win at the sectional game would mean Van-Far would host the state quarterfinal. But just as the clouds covered the sun, the St. Vincent Indians heated up for a fifth inning that ended a happy tale for Van-Far.

In the first the Indians got on the board as Logan Wilson led the game off with a double, scoring two batters later on a single from Treyson Culwell.

The lead doubled in the top of the fourth inning as Colten Jensen reached on a dropped third strike, went to second on another passed ball and went to third on an error by the pitcher. Caden Wilburn followed with an RBI ground-out for a 2-0 advantage.

St. Vincent scored in the bottom of the inning to pull within a run.

Van-Far struck back in the top of the fifth inning. Treyson Culwell led off with a single, followed by a single by Brayden McMillen. The Indians got a gift run on an error by the St. Vincent pitcher and scored again on a sacrifice bunt by Colten Jensen for a 4-1 lead.

At the same time reports came in that South Pemiscot had defeated Van Buren, meaning if the Indians could hold on, they would host the Class 2 Quarterfinal this coming Wednesday. When everything seemed to be going right for Van-Far, that’s when St. Vincent got hot.

In the bottom of the fifth with starter Josh Hodde at 76 pitches, St. Vincent went to work. After a leadoff groundout, third baseman Nathan Beatty made another good stop, but bounced a throw to Culwell at first that Treyson couldn’t dig. The number nine hitter followed with a single, then another error for the Indians to plate a run for the opposition.

A two run single tied the game followed by another run-scoring single to left field put St. Vincent ahead.

Coach Wes Rowden let his starter face one last hitter in the one-run game. That batter, designated hitter Ethan Pecault blasted a Hodde pitch over the left field fence for an 8-5 St. Vincent lead.

Hodde was replaced on the mound by district championship savior Logan Wilson.

The sophomore hit a thread on a St. Vincent jersey with his first pitch to start the rally over.

A walk and two hits followed as the home team plated two more runs before a fielder’s choice and strikeout ended the frame.

The Indians made some noise in the top of the sixth as Hodde hit a long home run over the right field fence with the bases empty.

A single from Treyson Culwell followed, but the Indians stranded the runner at second base.

Van-Far never recorded an out in the bottom of the inning as St. Vincent scored five more runs to end the game with the 10-run win.

The loss ended the coaching career of the Indians Wes Rowden, who announced his retirement earlier this year. Van-Far will also say goodbye to seniors Brayden McMillen and Cameron Barse, but return an exciting core of young talent.

Treyson Culwell was named the Community State Bank TribCast Player of the Game in the sectional, going three for four with three singles, an RBI and a run scored.

The Indians reached the sectional with a come-from-behind, 8-6 win over the rival Clopton Hawks in the Class 2 District 4 Championship at Wallace Park in Louisiana.

The Indians struck in the top of the first when Josh Hodde tripled in Logan Wilson and Riley Culwell.

Van-Far loaded the bases, but back to back strikeouts limited the damage for the top seeded Hawks.

Clopton was able to tie the contest in the bottom of the first as Stephen Talbert tripled home Mark Frank and Kevin Hammett.

Clopton would also load the bases, but were unable to push a third run across.

In the bottom of the second Clopton would take the lead on RBI hits from Talbert and Anthony Yentch, grabbing a 4-2 advantage.

The lead grew to four runs for the Hawks with another two run inning in the third.

Talbert collected his third hit and third RBI with a single and Landon Hall singled and scored on a wild pitch.

Van-Far starter Treyson Culwell was replaced on the mound by Logan Wilson with his team trailing by a 6-2 score.

The reliever would keep the Hawks off the scoreboard, allowing only three hits over the final four innings.

The Indians closed the gap with a run in the third on a single by Treyson Culwell.

Van-Far picked up two more runs in the fourth a sac fly by Wilson and an RBI hit from Hodde.

In a 6-5 game the Indians came to bat in the fifth inning.

Colten Jensen started the rally with a double, followed by a run scoring triple by Caden Wilburn to tie the contest.

Wilson hit a sacrifice fly to score Wilburn as Van-Far pulled ahead.

Riley Culwell singled with two outs and scored two batters later on a hit from Treyson Culwell.

The Indians would make the runs stick as a strikeout would end a threat from the Hawks in the sixth. Wilson struck out the side in the seventh to seal the win.

Hodde was three for four and a home run away from the cycle for Van-Far.

His three RBI and the pitching of Wilson earned the pair the Community State Bank TribCast Players of the Game in the Championship.

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