By Matt Turer — firstname.lastname@example.org
Morrisville, Mo. — After 14 years of waiting, it was over in a flash.
Marion C. Early/Morrisville poured nine runs on Fair Play (7-8) in the third inning, putting a stranglehold on Tuesday’s Class 2 District 13 championship and going on to ride five scoreless innings from Jonathan Bummgarner to beat the Hornets 11-0 and win their first district title since 2003.
While no one on the current Morrisville roster has any memory of the program’s last district title, the dog pile in front of home plate was proof enough as to what the moment meant for this program.
“It’s a really big deal,” Morrisville head coach Justin Crumpley said. “These kids have just worked so hard for it. These seniors, they’ve just been so close so many times. I’m so proud of them. They never gave up and kept digging in.”
Morrisville came close to ending that district drought last year, falling 4-2 to Liberal.
“From Day 1 of the first practice this fall it’s been one goal. It’s been one goal to get back here and find a way to give ourselves a chance,” Crumpley said.
“It’s been an up-and-down year. We played some really good teams this year and had some tough losses. I just told them over and over again to keep their heads up. We’re playing good baseball. This is going to pay off for us in the long run and it did today.”
Hadden Grant had a 3-3 night for Morrisville out of the leadoff spot, knocking in a pair of runs, tripling and going deep in the nine-run third.
Jacob McCroskey went 2-3 with three RBIs out of the 8-hole.
Bummgarner allowed two hits over five innings, striking out five and walking one.
“I just knew if we would play our best baseball at the right time then we might have a shot, and they got hot at the right time and there you go,” Crumpley said.
Morrisville (10-12) gets a shot at a quarterfinal berth in a sectional matchup against either Adrian (19-5) or Skyline (14-12) on May 22.