LINCOLN — Mother Nature, which impacted the spring varsity baseball season, struck again Thursday night at the Class A American Legion state tournament.
The American Division championship game between KB Building Services (Omaha Westside) and Union Bank (Lincoln Pius X) was suspended by a torrential downpour. KB held a 2-0 lead entering the bottom of the fifth when the umpires called it.
The game will be resumed Friday at 4 p.m. at Sherman Field.
The Lincoln portion of the 16-team tournament already had been delayed one day by rain. The National Division of the tourney was completed on schedule Wednesday night, with PI Midwest (Omaha Creighton Prep) winning for the third straight year.
KB grabbed the lead in the top of the first against Union Bank starter Daniel LeDuc. Mike Waldron drew a bases-loaded walk to bring in one run and a second scored when Will Frei grounded into a double play.
Union Bank threatened in the bottom of the inning but a leaping two-out grab by left fielder Drew Fitzmorris saved one and possibly two runs.
The team from Pius loaded the bases against KB starter Matt Waldron in the fourth but he escaped the jam. He struck out Jon Brakenhoff and Sam Raun and got Cole Felber to pop out.
KB completed its at-bat in the top of the fifth when the game was stopped because of lightning. Shortly after, the rain came pouring down.
The state tournament final is scheduled to be played Saturday at 6 p.m. at Prep. PI Midwest coach Pat Mooney, who was at Thursday night's game, said it would be a Legion decision whether that game is pushed back.
PI Midwest and the American Division champion will play in that championship game before both teams head to the Central Plains Regional next week in Fargo, N.D.
KB (40-10) advanced to the division final by defeating Kearney Runza 3-2 in an earlier game Thursday.
Pitcher Jake Meyers struck out 12 and the team from Westside won despite getting one hit against Kearney starter Ben Borer. KB's lone hit was a single by Devin Stueck in the first inning.
Coach Bob Greco's squad scored twice in the first — one coming home on a sacrifice fly by Drew Fitzmorris and the other on an infield error. KB made it 3-0 in the third on an RBI groundout by Fitzmorris.
Kearney (30-19) scored a run in the bottom of the third on a wild pitch by Meyers. The other came in the seventh on a run-scoring single by Anthony Pacheco.
Meyers finished the complete-game win in style. The first two batters in the ninth grounded out to second baseman Will Patterson and Meyers then struck out Hunter King on three fastballs.
“Jake pitched a nice game,'' Greco said. “I'm just glad we were able to get those runs early.''
KB Building Services ............................ 201 000 000—3 1 3
Kearney Runza ............................ 001 000 100—2 7 3
W: Meyers. L: Borer.