Peoria — After giving up 11 runs in the top of the first inning earlier in the day against Lincoln, Post 287 buckled down and didn’t allow a single run the entire game against Peoria in American Legion baseball.
Post 287 head coach Garry Smith said the team did a nice job of staying positive after the first game.
“The attitudes stayed positive even through the first game which allowed us to bounce back in game two.”
Adam Crites went the distance on the bump, allowing just seven hits and struck out 10.
Smith said “Crites did a great job changing speeds again.”
Rantoul was the team that benefitted from early runs after Emmanuel Lutes singled to lead off the game and scored on a bases-loaded walk. Peoria did get out of the inning, only giving up one run after Brendan Yocius grounded out to end the inning.
Crites breezed through the bottom of the frame, recording two of his 10 strikeouts and recording a ground out to second.
Post 287 went 1-2-3 in the top of the 2nd before Crites had to pitch out of danger in the bottom half.
Crites allowed two singles before getting the first out on a sacrifice bunt. Miklo Strader threw out a Peoria baserunner at home on a single before Crites got out of the inning with a strike out.
Both teams went 1-2-3 in the 3rd before Post 287 pulled away with a five-run top of the 4th.
Crites and Vermillion got the big inning started with back-to-back singles. Brendon Yocius had the third single in a row, which drove in Crites and Vermillion.
Strader walked and scored with Yocius on an Eli Remington 2-RBI double.
Luke Jones topped off the scoring in the 4th with an RBI single that scored Remington.
Peoria loaded the bases with one out in the bottom half of the 4th on two singles and an error by Brendan Yocius. Crites got out of the jam by striking out the final two batters of the frame.
Post 287 went three up three down in the top of the 5th, and Peoria threatened again in the bottom half.
Peoria led off with a single and an error by Rantoul left fielder Nate Garard.
Two strikeouts by Crites got Post 287 closer to getting out of the jam, but Peoria added a single to shallow left field to load the bases. Crites got a fly ball to center field to get out of the inning.
Post 287 put the game away in the top of the 6th with four runs.
Emmanuel Lutes led off the inning with a hit by pitch, Hayden Cargo singled and Luke Jones walked, which loaded the bases. Nate Garard then blew the game open with a bases-clearing triple to make the score 9-0. Crites completed the scoring with an RBI single that drove in Garard.
Crites closed out the game in simple fashion with a 1-2-3 inning on the mound in the bottom of the 6th, which gave Rantoul Post 287 a run rule-shortened 10-0 win over Peoria.
The offense was led by Nate Garard, Eli Remington and Brendan Yocius, who combined for 7 RBIs. Luke Jones, Adam Crites and Chad Vermillion each added 1 RBI.
Crites was the only pitcher for Post 287. He had 10 strikeouts and blanked the Peoria offense. Post 287 has a big week ahead. Rantoul had a home game Tuesday against Danville Post 210 before heading to Mattoon for a wooden bat tournament. Rantoul will open up against Moline at 4 p.m. Thursday.
Contact Ryan Birch at Rbirch@rantoulpress.com or on twitter @RyanBirchrp