MUSCATINE -- The Jefferson baseball team found out the hard way why baseball games last seven innings Friday night against Muscatine.
After battling the Muskies and star pitcher Derek Burkamper toe-to-toe for six innings, the J-Hawks imploded in the top of the seventh. Three Jefferson errors opened the door for six Muscatine runs and the Muskies beat the J-Hawks, 9-2, in a Class 4A substate first-round game at Tom Bruner Field.
Muscatine (25-11) advances to the substate semifinals Monday night at 7. It will host Prairie, which beat Ottumwa, 7-1, Friday.
"For six innings we hung in there and we competed," Jefferson Coach Mike Kuba said. "I told our guys not to be ashamed of that score. I thought we left it all out on the field.
"(Muscatine) was a very good team with a very good pitcher and we had them on the ropes tonight."
Jefferson (16-23) battled back from a 3-0 deficit with two runs in the fourth.
Back-to-back one-out singles by Austin Goodell and Layne Sullivan gave the J-Hawks a pair of runners and Colten Jourdan walked to load the bases.
Sam Techau then hit what appeared to be a double play grounder to short. But he beat the throw to first to plate the first run. Dylan Wright followed with a sharp one-hopper off the glove of Burkamper that bounced into the infield grass between short and third. Burkamper scurried to pick it up, but his throw to first was too late and another run scored, pulling Jefferson within 3-2.
Jefferson senior Jordan Dee kept the Muskies off balance with a mix of fastball, curve and change and allowed only four hits through six innings.
But the Muscatine seventh inning started with a throwing error by shortstop Ky Kramer. Brogan Simonsen, who was trying to lay down a sacrifice bunt, instead walked. Tyler Kovach followed with a sacrifice bunt that put runners at second and third and Dee was lifted in favor of Jourdan, who caught the first 6 1/3 innings.
Austin Moss greeted Jourdan with a liner that deflected off Jourdan's glove toward Kramer at short. The first run of the inning scored while Kramer tried to throw out Simonsen running to third. Instead the ball flew past Techau, the third baseman, to the fence, allowing Kovach to score. Moss ended up at third base when Techau threw home and the ball scooted away from catcher Ben Koering.
One out later, Max Freilinger reached when Kramer was unable to glove his grounder for another error that scored Moss. Trent Herman added an RBI single and Brooks Wagner a two-run double to complete the Muskies' scoring.
"We knew we had to stay out of the big inning," Kuba said. "We knew we needed to play error-free ball. We couldn't have those on a night like this.
"Then we weren't able to create the big inning for us."
Jefferson got singles by Wright and Dylan Jellison leading off the seventh, and the runners moved up to second and third on Christian Knox's ground out. But Tiedtke and Dee struck out to end the game.
Burkamper, a junior flamethrower with a nasty curveball who reportedly has committed to play collegiately at Nebraska, scattered eight hits and struck out 11 for the win.
"We knew we were facing a Division I pitcher," said Goodell, who had two hits. "We knew we were going to have to grind.
"It was a 3-2 ballgame and we had a chance. It just wasn't enough."
It was the last game for seven Jefferson senior starters: Goodell, Tiedtke, Dee, Jourdan, Techau, Jellison and Knox.
"I wouldn't trade this team for anything," said Tiedtke, who also had two hits. Tiedtke led the J-Hawks in batting and RBIs and was named the team's Most Valuable Player at its banquet Thursday night. "This was a great group of guys. I wouldn't trade any one of them."
"We're a bunch of fighters," Goodell said. "We always came out to play. It was a fun ride."
The start of the game was delayed one hour because of rain. Jefferson won the pregame coin toss and was the home team.
Austin Moss, cf, 4 1 1 1, Kyle Calvert, ss, 4 0 0 0, Max Freilinger, 1b, 4 2 1 0, Trent Herman, c, 3 0 2 2, Matt Wieskamp, cr, 0 1 0 0, Dawson Jones, dh, 3 2 1 0, Derek Burkamper, p, 0 0 0 0, Brooks Wagner, 3b, 4 1 2 2, Grant McConnaha, lf, 4 1 1 2, Brogan Simonsen, rf, 2 0 0 0, Eric Torres, pr, 0 1 0 0, Tyler Kovach, 2b, 1 0 0 0. Totals 29 9 8 7.
Dylan Jellison, 2b, 4 0 1 0, Christian Knox, cf, 3 0 0 0, Chance Tiedtke, lf, 4 0 2 0, Jordan Dee, p, 4 0 0 0, Ben Koering, c, 0 0 0 0, Austin Goodell, rf, 3 1 2 0, Layne Sullivan, dh, 3 1 1 0, Ky Kramer, ss, 0 0 0 0, Colten Jourdan, c-p, 2 0 0 0, Drew Johnson, cr, 0 0 0 0, Sam Techau, 3b, 3 0 0 1, Dylan Wright, 1b, 3 0 2 1. Totals 29 2 8 2.
Muscatine 100 200 6 -- 9 8 0
Jefferson 000 200 0 -- 2 8 3
Burkamper and Herman. Dee, Jourdan (7) and Jourdan, Koering (7). W - Burkamper (8-4). L - Dee (4-3). 2B - Freilinger (11), Wagner (6), McConnaha (14). SB - Knox (8), Tiedtke (8).
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