BASEBALL: Du Quoin clinches spot in Division Tournament

With wins over Campbell Hill and Chester, Du Quoin wrapped up their spot in the Junior American Legion baseball 5th Division Tournament as they will enter Monday's final four at the 25th District Tournament as one of only two unbeaten teams remaining.

Sunday's 14-1, five-inning victory over Chester was the third victory in a row for Post 647, which started the season 13-0 before back-to-back losses to Goreville.

It was never in doubt, with Du Quoin putting four runs on the board in the top of the first inning. With one out, Brock Bullar singled, Ashton Smith doubled, Braden Lee was hit by a pitch, Ryne O'Rourke singled, and Ryan Myers walked. Clayton Funk added a two-out base hit to cap off the rally.

Post 487 saved some face with an unearned run in the bottom of the first, but Post 647 buried them with five more runs in the top of the second. Two walks, a hit by pitch, a Chester error, and hits by Smith (single) and Myers (double) helped break the game open for Du Quoin.

The 9-1 lead gave Lee plenty of cushion to work with on the mound, and the right-hander cruised through all five innings without allowing an earned run. Lee gave up five hits and three walks while striking out six.

Offensively, Du Quoin racked up ten hits from Bullar (2-3, HBP), Smith (2-4, 2B), Lee (1-3, HBP), O'Rourke (1-2, 2 BB), Myers (1-1, 2B, 2 BB, HBP), Funk (1-3), Luke Metten (1-4) and Caleb Vogel (1-1, 2B). Hank Stewart (2 BB), Kameron Johnson (BB) and Jordan Edwards (error) also found their way on, meaning all eleven players who came to the plate for Du Quoin reached base at least once.

Post 647 still has work to do at the District Tournament, and can earn a higher seed at the Division Tournament with a win in Monday's championship against Metropolis. That game will start at 7:30 p.m. in Chester.

Du Quoin whipped up on Campbell Hill 15-6 in Friday's tournament opener for Post 647.

After a rough first inning for Stewart, Du Quoin's starting pitcher, Campbell Hill held a 4-1 lead. But a six-run second for Post 647, which included a three-run double by Smith and RBI singles by Lee and Edwards, Du Quoin never trailed again.

Stewart (1-5, BB), Bullar (1-3, 3 BB), Smith (4-6, 2 2B, 3B), Lee (2-2, SAC, 2 HBP), O'Rourke (1-3), Myers (1-1, 2 BB), Funk (1-3, 2 BB) and Edwards (2-5) did the hitting against Campbell Hill.

Edwards got the win on the mound with five and two-thirds innings of relief work, allowing just one run on four hits and three walks with a dozen strikeouts.