116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
IOWA CITY — In the most cliche of cliche-ish terms, this was a statement win. In big bold red letters.
You mercy rule anyone at the state baseball tournament, and it’s eye opening. Consider a 10-0, five-inning quarterfinal win Tuesday night over Indianola an eye-opening statement by Iowa City High.
The Little Hawks scored five runs in the first inning and didn’t let up in squashing their Central Iowa foe, delighting a very large contingent of “home” fans at Banks Field.
Second-seeded and second-ranked City High (32-8) draws West Des Moines Dowling (26-14) in a 7:30 p.m. semifinal Thursday. Dowling knocked off Cedar Rapids Prairie in Tuesday night’s other quarterfinal.
“Absolutely that was a statement the way we came out swinging the bats,” said City High Coach Brian Mitchell. “There was no question about it. I will tell you the way we’ve been swinging it at practice, this was just a reflection of that. You just sit there hoping that what you saw the last two days carries right over. And it did.”
“I think that we wanted to come out, and we wanted to set the tone,” said City High’s Carter Seaton. “We saw that Johnston played a close game with Liberty today (a 6-3 quarterfinal win), and I think we wanted to kind of come out and start off hot, get them out of the game early.”
It was well-hit ball after well-hit ball for City High. Seaton, Joey Bouska and Cade Obermueller had two-hit nights, and Gable Mitchell had a RBI single, two walks and three runs scored.
Alex Knudtson had a big two-run knock in the first. So did Isaiah Svoboda.
“That kind of helped with the nerves,” Gable Mitchell said. “Everybody coming into the game with some butterflies. Getting up big really helps.”
So did winning in five innings. It allowed Coach Mitchell to remove ace Obermueller after 3 2/3 innings and 63 pitches.
He’ll be available to pitch if, and that’s a big if, City High makes it to Friday night’s championship game. Obermueller allowed a leadoff single, walked one and struck out five.
He said the potential distraction of perhaps getting selected in this week’s Major League Baseball Draft wasn’t a distraction at all. The University of Iowa signee ended up not getting picked, though he said last week his intention all along has been to go to college.
“I was ready for this game,” he said. “With the draft, whatever was going to happen happens. But I was ready for this game.”
Indianola ended its season 26-13.
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