MC LEANSBORO, Ill. — Unfortunately for Mt. Carmel, the form chart held at the IHSA Class 2A regional baseball tournament here.
In a battle of the tourney’s top two seeds in the championship game Saturday, No. 1 Carmi jumped to a 5-0 lead and never looked back in a 7-2 victory over Mt. Carmel.
The second-seeded Golden Aces, who had snapped an eight-game losing streak with a win over Eldorado in the semifinals, bowed out of the state tournament series with a final record of 9-17.
“We never got anything going offensively,” said Mt. Carmel coach John Copeland. “We played from behind all day long.”
Carmi advances to the Greenville sectional, where the Bulldogs will face Shelbyville Thursday at 4:30 p.m. The tourney opens Wednesday with Teutopolis playing Trenton Wesclin.
The championship game is Saturday at 11 a.m. with the winner moving on the 2A Super Sectional at GCS Park in Sauget.
Carmi tapped Aces starter Thomas Allen for two runs in the bottom of the first, then added one in the second and two more in the third.
Mt. Carmel scored its first run in the fourth when Ian Hipsher doubled, was moved over on a Pete Smith bunt and scored on a wild pitch.
The Aces mounted a last-ditch rally in the seventh. The first three batters reached without the benefit of a hit. Austin Rue scored on an RBI single by Allen to make it 7-2. The Aces left the bases full as Carmi got out of the jam to end the game.
Allen was relieved by Hipsher in the fourth and Brandon Stringfellow in the sixth.
Mt. Carmel got four hits on the day, two from Rue (2-for-2 with a walk). Allen and Hipsher collected the other hits.
“I am proud of the seniors, and glad they got some things turning a corner this year,” Copeland said.