Coming into their Class 4A substate semifinal game Tuesday, Oskaloosa had a better batting average than Urbandale. The Indians were batting .342 for the season while the J-Hawks were hitting .278.
Those roles were reversed as Urbandale collected 14 hits while Oskaloosa had five in the J-Hawks’ 11-0 shutout in six innings.
The win sends the 17-23 J-Hawks into Wednesday night’s substate final at Indianola against another squad of Indians. Oskaloosa closes the year at 21-16.
Oskaloosa coach Brandon Schmidt said a team has to play its best when it comes to tournament time.
“When you get to the playoffs, you have to play your best games,” he said. “Urbandale put a good (win) streak together and when you can put that streak together, you can get wins back-to-back.
“It just didn’t happen for us tonight. We made a couple running mistakes on the bases and the ones in the field really hurt us. The further in the playoffs, the better the teams are usually. When you give them extra outs, they’re going to take advantage of it no matter who is on the mound.”
The J-Hawks struck for a run in the first two innings off Oskaloosa starter Garrett Luckett (7-6) and never looked back.
Logan Cropp began the game by hit by a pitch and singles by Jake Bjorkgren and Tyler Craig loaded the bases. Cropp scored on a single by Mike Busch.
With the bases still loaded, Urbandale had a chance to put the game out of reach in the opening inning. But Luckett struck out Ross Curnow and got Michael Schinstock to fly out to Brandon VanDalen in right to end the inning.
The J-Hawks added a run in the second after the first two batters flied out. Cropp walked and Kellen Roberts reached on an error, Bjorkgren, who finished the contest by going 4-for-5 and three RBI, singled home Cropp for the 2-0 advantage.
Oskaloosa, had two-out singles in each of the first two innings, but runner’s interference put an end to the first inning and a pickoff ended the threat in the second.
Urbandale tallied two more runs in the third as a walk to Busch was followed by single by Curnow. Tyler Young walked and Busch scored on a passed ball. Curnow touched home plate on a David Peyton ground out.
Three more runs by the J-Hawks in the fourth made it 7-0 as Bjorkgren singled and went to second on a throwing error by Oskaloosa third baseman Erik McGee, Craig got on base courtesy of another Indian error and Busch’s sacrifice fly to left brought home Bjorkgren. An RBI double by Curnow and a run-producing single by Schinstock spotted their team a seven-run cushion. Young walked and that ended the night for Luckett.
Austin Westercamp took over on the mound and got the final out of the inning.
Oskaloosa got another two-out hit in the fourth, this time by Jakob McDowell who went to second on a wild pitch. But McGee grounded out to end the inning.
Urbandale got two runners on base in the fifth, but was unable to score for the only time in the game.
VanDalen coaxed a two-out walk by Schinstock (5-0) in the fifth and John Cummings singled to right-center for Oskaloosa best scoring chance of the game. But Jake McCrea grounded out to Bjorkgren at first base to put a stoppage to the threat.
The J-Hawks got four runs in the sixth with Young and Peyton getting RBI hits and Bjorkgren closing out the scoring with a two-run double.
Westercamp had a double with one out in the sixth for Oskaloosa, but a fly out and a ground out put the capper to the Indians’ 2010 season.
“The kids have to keep their heads up high,” Schmidt said. “I know it’s a disappointing way to end the season. If we would have played our type of game like we did Friday night, it would have been a close game. I don’t think we’re a type of team that would blow away with any type of game in the playoffs. I’ll tell them there’s nothing to be disappointed about. This is the first time our group of seniors will leave with over 20 wins and a second-place finish in the conference. You have to look at the positives and our future is bright for all the underclassmen for next year.”
Urbandale 11, Oskaloosa 0, 6 innings
U 112 304 — 11 13 0
O 000 000 — 0 5 4
Oskaloosa battery — Garrett Luckett (L, 7-6, 3 2/3 IP, 7 R, 7 H, 4 BB, 2 K), Austin Westercamp (2 1/3 IP, 4 R, 6 H, 0 BB, 4 K) and Marco Diaz.
2B — Westercamp.
Hits — Westercamp 2-for-3, Diaz 1-for-2, Jakob McDowell 1-for-3, John Cummings 1-for-2.