Parkston ends Vermillion Tanagersâ�?�? baseball season By Parker Knox
Sports Writer When Vermillion and Parkston tangled during the regular season, the result was a tight 3-2 contest in the Trojansâ�?�? favor that could have gone either way. That was also the case Monday night when the same teams played in the Region 1B championship game at Parkston. The bad news is that you wouldn't know that from the final score. Vermillion, holding a 3-2 lead with nine outs to go to reach the state semifinals, couldnâ�?�?t finish the job against the undefeated Trojans, who exploded for 11 straight runs and a 13-3 victory. VHS finished the high school season with a 9-5 record, and Parkston advances to the state â�?�?Bâ�? semifinals at Platte on Memorial Day. Andrew Eidem had given the Tanagers a lead with a first-inning RBI, and Reid Meierkort added another later. Meanwhile, starter Alex Schaack had held Parkston in check through his four-inning stint on the mound. However, Coach Jason Gault made a pitching change, bringing in J.R. Moore in relief. With the help of some Tanager miscues in the field, Parkston exploded for six runs in the fifth to erase Vermillionâ�?�?s 3-2 lead. â�?�?Things went sour from there,â�? Gault said. â�?�?Up to that point we had put some pressure on them, and we were competitive, but against a good team like Parkston, if you open the door for them, theyâ�?�?ll take advantage, and they really did.â�? Once the floodgates opened, Parkston could not be stopped, and they scored five more insurance runs in the sixth to salt away the sweet come-from-behind win. â�?�?I think our boys were disappointed they came so close to winning the region championship but couldnâ�?�?t get it done,â�? Gault said. â�?�?We needed to play perfect baseball and didnâ�?�?t quite do that.â�? But for Gault and most of the Tanagers, itâ�?�?s far from the end of baseball. By next week they will have regrouped and changed uniforms to open the Post 1 American Legion season. A previously scheduled opener Tuesday against Alcester has been canceled, so Vermillion will open at Canton on Friday, then host Lennox at 5 p.m. May 31. The latter contest will be part of a â�?�?Vermillion Baseball Dayâ�? that finishes with the amateur Grey Sox hosting Crofton at 7 p.m. Gault said that, with a couple of exceptions, the Post 1 and VHS baseball rosters are pretty much identical. â�?�?For the most part the roster stays the same,â�? the coach said. â�?�?A couple of the high school kids donâ�?�?t play Legion ball, and there are a couple boys from the Beresford area that join us for the Legion season.â�? Gault has put together a summer that includes more than 20 games, not counting three major regular-season tournaments during the month of June. Two of those events will be played in Vermillion.