The fan who just can't get enough baseball on these hot, humid dog-day evenings would do well to simply camp at Prentis Park for the next week.
If the weather cooperates, there will be baseball every weekend afternoon and every weekday evening starting tonight (Friday) as Class "B" and Class "A" district tournaments are played in Vermillion.
The Vermillion Grey Sox and seven other teams play in the "B" district, which will start at 7:30 p.m. tonight. Precise pairings were still being determined by games being played earlier this week.
There will be a single game at 2 p.m. Saturday, followed by two games at 2 p.m. Sunday. The district championship game is set for Monday evening, and games which will determine other district representatives to the state amateur tourney will be played Tuesday and Wednesday nights. In all, four teams among the eight in the "B" district will play at the state tournament.
The Grey Sox appeared doomed to defeat after the Canton Aces scored eight runs on four hits, four walks and an error in the sixth inning to take an 8-2 lead, but the home team came up with three runs in the eighth and four in the bottom of the ninth to win, 9-8.
Vermillion had taken a 2-0 lead in the fourth on Derek Moeller's bases-loaded double that followed Tyler Johnson's successful bunt for a basehit that filled the bags.
Canton got to starter Tim Ross in the nightmarish sixth. He was relieved by Cory Taggart, who left the mound after a three-run double by the Aces' Colby Van Dockern. Johnson relieved and got an inning-ending ground ball from the only batter he faced to end the uprising. Kyle Nemec then pitched the final three innings and kept Canton scoreless although he escaped a bases-loaded jam in one inning and had two baserunners behind him in another. In the top of the ninth Nemec struck out the side.
The Grey Sox got back into the game when Jason Rasmussen doubled in one run, an error let in another, and Nemec single cut the deficit to 8-5.
In the bottom of the ninth all four players whose American Legion seasons had ended three days earlier figured in the winning rally for the Grey Sox. Matt Houk walked, Reid Meierkort singled and Grant Lueders was hit with a pitch to load the bases. Rasmussen then drove a three-run triple up the gap to the outfield fence to tie the game at 8-8.
As the winning run on third base, Rasmussen remained there as the next two batters were retired, but a walk to Tyler Johnson and an intentional walk to Nemec to fill the bags set the stage for Taggart to win it. A Cody Vostad pitch clipped Taggart on the batting helmet to force in the winning run.
Meierkort and Brandon Gorsuch had two hits apiece among the Grey Sox total of eight knocks off Vostad.