North Shelby Advances With Win at Green City
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By David Sharp
North Shelby (12-3) drew six bases on balls in the first two innings of their May 23, 2022 Class 1 Sectional baseball game at Green City. The Raiders took a three run lead and went on to a 5-1 win.
The Gophers (16-2, Ranked fifth in Missouri Baseball Class 1) threatened in the first two innings but failed to score. Landon Bender drew a first inning bases loaded walk for a 1-0 North Shelby first inning lead.
Kyle Smith began the first inning rally by drawing a walk. Smith scored the opening inning tally. Casey Shockley cashed in a pair of walks, driving Robert Uhlmeyer and Cade Fallert home with a second inning two out, two RBI hit.
“I had defense behind me,” Casey Shockley said. “They made plays. I had to be in attack mode,” Shockley said. “They were swinging at the first pitch. I got ahead, then you can work with some pitches.”
Casey Shockley turned in a nine strikeout, complete game pitching performance. Shockley limited a potent Green City offense to one run on three hits. Shockley walked three and hit two batters in seven innings pitched.
“We had a lot of key hits,” Casey Shockley told the Shelby County Herald. “I finally came through. Cale Stoneburner had a good hit. We are going (to the quarterfinals) with the same mindset.”
Aaron Peavler stroked a one out third inning single for Green City. Catcher Robert Uhlmeyer threw the runner out stealing for out number two. Chesnie Robbins took a two out opportunity away from Grant O’Haver with a great running catch in right field for the final out of inning three.
North Shelby held a 3-0 edge after three complete innings. Aaron Peavler struck out the side in the North Shelby fourth inning. Brody Lunsford singled leading off the Gopher fourth but was stranded.
“Casey has really been rolling the last half of the season,” North Shelby coach Scott Gaines said. “He has taken over as the Ace of our staff. Rob (Uhlmeyer) has been struggling a little bit.”
“He has made quality pitches in big games,” Coach Gaines said of Casey Shockley. “He has been pounding the zone, keeping them off balance. They couldn’t really get solid contact.”
“They have been making plays behind him. As a pitcher, when your defense is making plays, pitchers think all then have to do is throw strikes,” Scott Gaines said. “The defense will have my back.”
Garrett Hall erased a potential fifth inning leadoff hit when he threw Kyle Smith out at first base from right field. Cale Stoneburner walked with two out in the NS fifth inning. Stoneburner stole second base but was stranded when Garrett Hall caught a Landon Bender fly ball for the final out.
Green City broke through in the bottom of the sixth inning. Laydon Fields drew a leadoff walk. Brody Lunsford stroked a one out, RBI hit for a 3-1 score entering the seventh inning.
North Shelby plated two insurance runs in the top of the seventh. Robert Uhlmeyer touched Gopher reliever Laydon Fields for an RBI double. Fields induced a ground ball for the second out.
Cale Stoneburner delivered a two out RBI single, scoring Kyle Smith for a 5-1 lead. Garrett Hall was hit by a pitch leading off the bottom of the seventh inning. Xander Salas reached on an error.
A pop fly to Kyle Smith at first base recorded out number two. Casey Shockley struck out a batter for the final out. North Shelby scored five runs on five hits. Casey Shockley was 2-4 at bat with two runs batted in.
Robert Uhlmeyer and Kyle Smith scored two North Shelby runs each.
Green City scored one run on three hits. The Gophers stranded seven base runners. Brody Lunsford was 2-3 with two RBI’s.
Aaron Peavler pitched the first five innings and took the loss. Peavler struck out nine batters, walked eight men. Peavler allowed two hits and three earned runs.
Laydon Fields pitched the final two innings. Fields struck out four of his nine batters faced with no walks on three hits. Laydon Fields allowed two earned runs in the final game of a stellar Green City sports career.
Seniors Laydon Fields and Garrett Hall played their final games for Green City.
”They got off to a hot start and we didn’t unfortunately,” Green City coach Dale Whitacre said. “We struggled with the zone early in the game. (Aaron Peavler) threw an amazing third and fourth inning to keep us in the game.”
“Unfortunately, those three runs early in the game hurt us. We didn’t have any more room to walk guys early,” Dale Whitacre said. “We put it in the strike zone, and it found a hole.”
“It’s hard to play back from a 3-0 game,” Coach Whitacre said. “We just couldn’t muster much offense. We had a chance in the second inning.” Green City had a run taken off the board when the umpires called a balk on Casey Shockley. The ball went past first base on a pickoff move.
A runner reached the plate, but the officials ruled a timeout had been called, sending the runners back to first and second base. “Kaden Johnson hits the ball to right field. (Chesnie) Robbins makes an amazing catch. That ball gets down and we get two runs,” Dale Whitacre said.
“We weren’t able to score until the last innings. We had a great spring season,” Coach Whitacre said. “The boys have nothing to hang their heads about. We got to defend our district title. We got to this game. That is awesome.”
Green City won their fourth consecutive district baseball championship in 2022. “We played decent baseball. We went to all kinds of places trying to pick up games,” Whitacre said.
“We saw some new teams. We got some young guys field time,” Dale Whitacre said. “The seniors were great leaders this year. We had expectations for the young guys. To their credit, they stepped up and played well when they were asked to.”
“It was still a good season. Garrett Hall is a good program guy. He played a lot as freshman on a district championship team. He played a good right field for us. He saw pitches, moved runners along. Got bunts down. He did whatever I asked of him.”
“Laydon (Fields) had a great career he started every game since he was a freshman. Tonight was start 91 or 92 for him. He came to the team as an outfielder. He learned to play shortstop. Caught a little bit.”
“He played third this spring to make the defense work a little better. He is a great kid. A total coaches kid. He did whatever I asked. Whatever the team needs. Great senior leader. He has had a great career here. He has been a conference MVP. Has been all conference and all district many times.”
“He will look back and see he had a great run the four years he was here.”