May 7, 2015

Logan Media Services

CARTERVILLE – The John A. Logan College baseball team will seek its third Region 24 championship in the last five years and ninth altogether under veteran head coach Jerry Halstead when the semi-final round of the tournament gets under way today (Friday) at Rent One Park in Marion.

The Volunteers (26-15) are the No. 2 seed in the tourney and will square off with No. 3 seed, Lincoln Trail (26-21) at 3 p.m. The first match will feature No. 1 seed, Southwestern Illinois (30-16), against the No. 4 seed, Kaskaskia (29-12).

The losing teams Friday will play at 10 a.m. Saturday in an elimination game, while the winning teams Friday play at 1 p.m. Saturday. The winner of the 1 p.m. game is automatically declared the Region 24 champ and will host the Northern District Tournament next week.

There will also be an elimination game at 4 p.m. Saturday to determine the second Region 24 representative to qualify for the District Tournament.

“This is the time of year when you want to be playing your best baseball,” said Vols head coach Jerry Halstead. “After playing poorly Saturday in splitting a doubleheader with Lake Land, we bounced back Sunday and played much better. And we have followed that up with some good practices this week.”

Halstead said the Statesmen of Lincoln Trail are a formidable first-round opponent. Staff ace, sophomore righthander, Damon Olds (6-2, 3.38 ERA), tossed a 1-0 shutout over the Vols in Robinson earlier this spring.

“I think it’s going to be a good game, a tough game,” Halstead said. “All three games we played with Trail were close. Their starter (Olds) is the real deal. We’re going to have to be ready to play.”

Logan will counter with sophomore righthander Ryan Dunne (4-3, 2.59 ERA).

“Our starting pitching has been very good all year and now we have a guy in Matthias Dietz, who is developing into a very good closer. I like our chances.”

The Vols have won 20 of their last 25 games.


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