Needing a victory to clinch their first district title in team history, the Wakefield Warriors left no doubt.
The high-school baseball team scored 13 runs in the first two innings June 5 en route to a 16-2 National District championship-sealing five-inning blowout victory over the host Lewis Lancers in Springfield.
Wakefield and the Marshall Statesmen share the crown because each team finished with 10-2 records and split two regular-season games. The Warriors lost their second meeting against Marshall, then won three straight contests, capped by the June 5 triumph, to earn the title.
“This isn’t a one-year thing, it’s the culmination of building the program and execution on the field,” Wakefield coach Mike Ruck said about the district crown. “We’ve been second in the district, so it’s nice to finish first. Our goal was to get the program into this position. I think we have a team now that’s not going to give away anything.”
Against Lewis, Wakefield took control right away, leading 8-0 after the first inning and 13-0 after two. The Warriors took advantage of multiple walks and balks by Lewis pitchers, along with fielding errors and miscues.
Left-hander Lorenzo Snyder was the starting and winning pitcher. He worked three innings, allowed one hit and no runs, did not walk a batter and struck out five.
With the bat for Wakefield, Landon Thomas doubled twice, Garrett Dougherty had an RBI single, Charles Grove had two hits, Alex Wood had a two-run single, Jordan Bussie singled, Wade Bringham had two RBI and Sean Sean Iredell added one.
Wakefield defeated Justice, 8-5, and Edison, 8-0, in its previous two district games.
Ruck has been Wakefield’s head coach for seven seasons. He was the head coach at Arlington rival Yorktown before taking the Wakefield position, and led that team to district titles. His Wakefield team immediately began being much more competitive during his first season in 2015.
NOTE: As a result of being district co-champions, Wakefield earned the top seed from the league in the upcoming 6D North Region Tournament. That seed also brings a first-round bye and a home quarterfinal game.