Dimock-Emery continued its postseason winning ways on Wednesday.
The Raptors, who entered District 5B play with a three-game losing streak, rattled off three straight victories to capture their first district title since 2016 on July 31. The winning streak reached four straight with a 4-3 win over the Castlewood Monarchs at the Class B state amateur baseball tournament.
The Raptors (12-10) were 8-10 after dropping a 10-7 decision against Menno on July 18. But Wednesday’s one-run win extended their longest winning streak of the season.
“Amateur baseball, you get the same group of guys there continually and good things seem to happen,” Dimock-Emery manager Brad Bartscher said. “You may not win them all, but at least you can start meshing a little bit and play better baseball.”
Things meshed at the right time Wednesday. After two straight Castlewood errors, Dimock-Emery veteran Doug Sudbeck ripped a two-out single down the left field line, scoring Sam Michels for the go-ahead run.
“I was just trying to make contact basically and trying to drive in a run,” Sudbeck said. “All I was trying to do was get on base. … I felt good. I’ve been here and there all season. So it felt good to finally get a big hit for them.”
Sudbeck finished with 2-of-3 and drove in three runs, delivering in the clutch and drawing praise from his team.
“That’s Dougie Barrels for us,” Bartscher said. “He’s in the lineup for a reason. He’s there to get something done and he’s been clutch all year.”
After the go-ahead run, Dimock-Emery’s Jason Schmidt completed his complete-game performance in the top of the ninth. Schmidt gave up six hits, no earned runs, walked three batters and struck out 11 batters on 130 pitches.
“Fifth inning, they finally caught up to my fastball a little bit,” Schmidt said. “So I had to mix in a few more change-ups and kind of pitch it backward a little bit more and keep them off balance. It worked the rest of the way so I am not going to complain.”
Perhaps more importantly, Schmidt’s efficient outing allowed Dimock-Emery to save arms before its next game Sunday against Milbank.
“He didn’t have that high of a pitch count either,” Bartscher said. “If you are ever going to go on a run you have to be able to use your pitching wisely and hope it works out for you.”
Offensively, Drew Kitchens, Luke Bamberg, Gene Kitchens, Peyton Nash and Sam Pischke each had a hit.
In the fourth inning, Sudbeck’s two-run single gave Dimock-Emery a 2-0 lead. In the bottom of the fifth, Castlewood scored all three of its runs on a Parker Schmidt RBI single and a Kellen Benck two-run single. In the bottom of the fifth, Dimock-Emery evened the score on a Benck balk.
Dimock-Emery plays Milbank at 5:30 p.m. Sunday.