VANDALIA- The season came to an abrupt and disappointing end for the Aviators Thursday afternoon, falling to Edgewood 10-7 in the DI Sectional Semi-Final.The Aviators seemed to be on their way to securing a Sectional Championship berth, taking a 3-2 lead into the fifth inning. The Panthers however had other ideas, blowing the game wide open with an eight run fifth inning.
LEBANON- The Aviators returned to action Monday afternoon, after nearly a week off due to rain outs versus Wayne and Moeller. Unfortunately for Butler, the layover cooled the Aviators' bats, as they fell 2-1 to Lebanon.
After four scoreless innings of baseball, the Aviators struck first in the top half of the fifth inning. Sophomore Spencer Sarsgard scored from third base on a passed ball, giving Butler a 1-0 lead.
The Warriors clawed their way back, putting together a two out rally in the bottom of the sixth inning, to take a 2-1 lead. The Aviators were unable to mount a comeback in the seventh inning, dropping to 17-9 overall on the season.
Offensively, Butler was only able to muster two hits. The Aviators pitching staff, working on strict pitch counts, combined to surrender a mere five hits on the night. Butler was led on the mound by starter Mitch Gremling. The freshman righty allowed just one hit, while striking out two through two innings of work.
The Aviators will hope to bring a little more offensive pop into Thursday's Sectional Final versus the winner of Tuesday's match-up between Springfield and Edgewood. Thursday's game will be played at Butler, with a 5:00 PM start time. Admission is $6.00 at the gate.
VANDALIA- The Greater Western Ohio Conference released the All-Division teams over the weekend, and the Aviators were well represented.
Senior short-stop John Myers was honored as the GWOC North Athlete of the Year, and head coach Trent Dues shared Coach of the Year honors with Greenville skipper Eric Blumenstock.
VANDALIA- Much like the Troy series a week ago, the Aviators followed a tight Monday contest with a Tuesday afternoon blowout. This time it was Sidney getting the early exit, and Butler celebrating a 13-3 win.
“It feels great,” said senior Eric Hansman. “It was a good team effort, yesterday and today. We knew we were the better team, and we took it to them.”
SIDNEY- The Aviators locked up sole possession of the GWOC North Championship Monday afternoon with a 4-2 win over second place Sidney (10-12, 5-4). The league title is Butler's 15th under head Coach Trent Dues (393-156).
CLAYTON - It was a Saturday to forget as Butler was swept by host Northmont in Sarturday's double header, 9-4 and 14-2.The Bolts scored six runs in the first inning of game one, and the offensive onslaught pretty much set the tone for the rest of the day. The Aviators chipped away at the Northmont lead, plating runs in the second, fifth and sixth inning. The Bolts piled on three additional runs in the bottom of the sixth to slam the door on a Butler come back.
DAYTON- The Aviators (15-6, 7-1) got solid pitching and timely hitting Friday night, en route to a 3-1 victory over Beavercreek (12-9, 5-3) at Fifth-Third Field.
VANDALIA- Any worries of a letdown following Monday's crucial win at Troy were quickly put to rest Tuesday afternoon, as the Aviators cruised to a 14-3 win over the shell shocked Trojans.Offensively, Butler absolutely battered the Troy pitching staff, handing Trojan pitcher Ben Langdon (5-1) his first loss of the season. Langdon was relieved by Kyle Croft, who received more of the same, as the Aviators pounded out a total of 14 hits.
TROY- The Aviators took a big step towards locking down the top spot in the GWOC North Monday evening, handing the host Trojans of Troy a 4-2 loss. While there is still a lot off baseball to be played, one thing is certain; the Aviators control their own destiny.With one out on the board and trailing 2-0 in the fifth inning, the Aviators put into motion a rally that would prove to be the game winner.
VANDALIA- With Carlisle (17-1) coming into the game ranked #9 in the latest D-III poll, it was imperative that the Aviators bring their "A game". Four errors and a number of stranded runners later, the Indians left town with a 4-2 win, their 17th of the season.Sophomore Alex Murphy went 2-for-2 with an RBI and a double. Senior Eric Hansman finished the day 3-for-4 with a run and a double. The Aviators out hit Carlisle eleven hits to six, but just could not capitalize with runners in position.
WEST CARROLLTON- The Aviators returned to action Friday afternoon, beating host West Carrollton 4-1. Butler took the early 2-0 lead in the first inning and never looked back.
Butler Bounces Piqua In 7-4 Win
Aviators rally in the sixth inning to secure road victory
PIQUA- Feeling the pressure of a must win game, the Aviators (11-5, 5-1) responded Tuesday night, knocking off host Piqua 7-4. The win kept Butler out of a potential three-game skid, and atop the GWOC North standings.
Sophomore pitcher Alex Schulke (1-1) earned his first win of the season, pitching two strong innings in relief of senior Josh Edwards. Schulke allowed only one hit and struck out three Indians. Freshman pitcher Mitch Gremling came on in the sixth inning to hold the Indians off through the final two innings of play.
The Aviators took an early lead in the third inning, ignited by freshman Nic Martin's single to left field. Martin scored three batters later, giving Butler the 1-0 lead. Piqua answered in the bottom half of the inning, bringing across four runs to take a 4-1.
Butler chipped away at the Indians' lead in the fifth inning, narrowing the gap to 4-3 and rallied to take the lead for good in the sixth. The Aviators tacked on a total of four runs, courtesy of a bases loaded walk by senior Mitch Grafton and a clutch two-run single by senior Eric Hansman.
Offensively Butler was led at the plate by senior shortstop John Myers, who was 3-for-4 with two runs.
The Aviators will get a few days off before traveling to West Carrollton on Friday to take on the Pirates. Game time is slated for 5:00 PM.
VANDALIA- It was a beautiful day at the ballpark, but an ugly one on the field for the Aviators. Butler dropped it's second straight game Monday afternoon, this time a 4-3 disappointment to Piqua.
“This win means the world to us,” Kennedy said, some four hours after his initial blast started off the game. “When we started off 1-and-6, we knew we were a heckuva lot better team than that. To win a battle like this, against such a high-caliber team like Butler, it’s a great statement about our team. I just love every second of being a part of this.”
The lead changed hands five times, then it looked as if Springboro had the game won in the 10th after Austin Reynolds doubled home Kennedy and Jake Johnson to give the Panthers a 7-5 lead.
But with two outs and pinch-hitter Jacob Naas behind in the pitch count, the Butler Aviator blooped a towering high shot to left field. The ball swirled in the wind, landed just inside the left-field foul line, and Butler’s John Myers and Eric Hansman were able to score on the play to tie the game once more.
The Panthers’ Jack Schaaf led off the 11th with a double to right field. He advanced to third on a passed ball, then scored what turned out to be the winning run by stealing home. Hansman, the Aviators’ reliever at the time, had thrown a pitchout to catcher Bret Bachman, but the throw sailed wide to Bachman’s left, allowing Schaaf to score.
Butler had Bachman perched at third with the tying run, and Nick Martin at second with the winning run, in the bottom of the 11th with one out, but reliever Austin Woodby struckout the next Aviator, then got lead-off hitter John Myers to groundout back to the mound for the game’s final out.
“Whether you win it or lose, it was a great high school game, and it was fun to be a part of it,” said Springboro coach Mark Pelfrey. “It was kind of like a championship fight. You just kept giving punches and taking punches. Two talented teams, it was just a great high school game.”
Butler coach Trent Dues said it was definitely one of the colder games he’d been involved in, and he echoed Pelfrey’s sentiments about the frigid battle.
“Both teams played hard, regardless of the conditions. Both teams have a dugout to come into between innings. But we just made too many mistakes. That’s what it was for us,” Dues said.
In a game that lasted four hours and 10 minutes, Springboro sent Cody Lane, Jordan Little, Joe Lipinski, Reynolds and Woodby to the mound. The five Panthers scattered 12 hits in the win.
Butler got pitching efforts from starter Alex Schulke, Todd Reichard, Jacob Larger and Hansman and they gave up 13 hits. Larger led the way with seven strikeouts in his four innings of work.
*This story appears courtesy of the Vandalia Drummer News.
FRANKLIN - The Aviators (10-3, 4-0) continued their winning ways Thursday afternoon, knocking off Franklin (10-3, 4-1) by a score of 2-0.
The Aviators were paced by senior pitcher Josh Edwards (3-0) who was absolutely lights out for Butler on the mound. Edwards pitched a one hit shutout, striking out seven Wildcats. As an exclamation point, Edwards took the no-hit contest into the seventh inning, and was just an out away when Franklin's Travis Lakins doubled for the Wildcats' lone hit of the night.
Senior shortstop John Myers led the Aviators offensively, going 3-for-4 with one run and one RBI.
Butler will look to stretch it's win streak to four straight Friday afternoon hosting Springboro (7-6, 4-0) at 5:00 PM. The Aviators will then get the weekend off to prepare for a Monday/Tuesday series against GWOC North foe Piqua.
VANDALIA - What a difference a day makes, or in this case two. Just 48 hours after the Aviators and Green Wave went toe-to-toe in an extra inning showdown, Butler handily dispatched visiting Greenville 14-0.Bolstered by a strong pitching performance from freshman Mitch Gremling (2-2), Butler hit the Greenville pitching hard, scoring in each of the five innings played. Gremling went the distance for Butler, allowing only one hit, while striking out two in the shutout win.
VANDALIA - Amidst the miscues and stranded runners, it looked like the Aviators were headed towards their first league loss of the season.
Trailing the entire game, Butler put together a key rally in the bottom of the seventh inning. With two men aboard, senior Pete Yorgen smashed a liner to right field, scoring fellow seniors Mitch Grafton and Eric Hansman.
Despite the next two batters being sat down, Yorgen managed to steal his way to second, and on to third. With two outs and two strikes, Yorgen made a mad dash to home plate on a passed ball, sliding in for the tying run.
Senior pitcher Jake Larger (4-0) pitched a 1-2-3 eighth inning, to setup the late game heroics.
With two outs, senior John Myers was hit by a pitch and trotted down to first. A pitch later the speedy senior came up with a stolen base, arriving safely at second.
127 feet away at home plate, Grafton hammered the next pitch to center field. The line drive sent Myers towards Coach Trent Dues, who furiously waved the senior shortstop around the corner and towards home.
Myers bulled his way to the plate and was greeted by a mob of joyous Aviators celebrating an improbable 6-5 victory.
Offensively Yorgen led Butler, going 3-for-4 with two RBI. Hansman finished 2-for-3 with two doubles.
Larger picked up his fourth win of the season, going eight innings and striking out four for Butler.
The Aviators and Green Wave will wrap the series up Tuesday at Greenville. Game time is slated for 5:00 PM.
CINCINNATI - The opportunities were plentiful, but in the end the Aviators just could not capitalize, falling to Elder 7-6 Saturday afternoon.
After falling behind early, Butler rallied to tie the game at 2-2 in the top half of the second inning. The Aviators went on to take a 5-3 advantage in the fifth inning, but allowed Elder an additional four runs in the home half of the inning. It would be a lead that the Panthers would not relinquish.
On the offensive side of the ball Butler was led by senior John Myers who was 3-for-4 with an RBI.
The Aviators resume league play on Monday, playing host to Greenville (5-4, 1-1). The first pitch is scheduled for 5:00 PM.
VANDALIA - With bundled spectators in blankets sipping hot chocolate under the white glow of stadium lights, it had the look and feel of a typical football Friday. The Aviators didn't disappoint the Butler faithful, treating them to a 10 inning victory over visiting Lebanon (6-2, 2-0) under the Friday Night Lights.Between the two teams, ten pitchers would ultimately take the mound in this one. For the Aviators, it was senior Todd Reichard (1-0) who picked up the win, his first of the season.
TROTWOOD - The Aviators opened Tuesday's game at Trotwood with 10 runs in the first inning, to cruise to a 17-1 win over the Rams. The win improved Butler's overall record to 6-2 (2-0).
Offensive highlights included a solo homerun by senior Eric Hansman, in addition to 3 RBI. Junior Brett Bachman was 2-for-2 with 3 RBI, while sophomore Alex Schulke was 2-for-2 with 1 RBI.
Senior Pete Yorgen, junior Jacob Naas, and sophomore Alex Murphy each doubled, while senior John Myers stretched out a triple.
Freshman Mitch Gremling (1-1) earned his first win of the season through three innings of work, striking out six. Gremling was relieved by senior Todd Reichard, who sat down three Rams on strikes.
VANDALIA - Butler opened league play Monday afternoon with a 20-0 runrule victory over visiting Trotwood.
While the Butler offense was plentiful, the fortunes were not the same in the visitors dugout. Butler seniors Josh Edwards and Todd Reichard combined on the mound, to hold the Rams to just one hit on the afternoon.
Edwards (2-0) got the start, pitching three innings and earning his second win of the season. Reichard came on in the fourth inning to close out the final two innings.
Seniors Mitch Grafton and John Myers, along with junior Jacob Naas had a number of hits on the afternoon. The offensive highlight however was courtesy of sophomore Alex Murphy, who hit a three-run homer. The round tripper was Murphy's first of the season.
The Aviators and Rams will wrap-up the series this afternoon at Trotwood. First pitch is scheduled for 5:00 PM.
VANDALIA - The Aviators dodged a three game skid Saturday, pulling out a 3-2 victory in the second game of the afternoon's double header versus Hilliard-Davidson.
Just as they did in the previous game, the Aviators loaded the bases in the bottom of the 7th inning, with the winning run aboard. Butler failed to capitalize in game one, stranding all three runners and falling 6-3.
This time however, senior Jeff Lawson took full advantage of a passed ball, trucking across the plate from third, for the winning run.
Senior pitcher Eric Hansman got the start and worked four innings. Junior Jacob Larger (3-0) came on in relief and pitched the final three innings, striking out two and picking up the win. The victory was Larger's third of the season.
Freshman Mitch Gremling and senior Pete Yorgen each had an RBI in the Butler win. In the previous game, senior Eric Hansman was 3-for-4 with an RBI, while senior Logan Mann and Gremling also contributed an RBI each.
Sophomore Alex Schulke and senior Todd Reichard combined on the mound for Butler in game one.
BELLEFONTAINE - The Aviators' perfect start to the season was halted Friday evening, with a 6-3 loss at Bellefontaine.
Already leading 1-0, the Chieftains blew the game wide open in the bottom half of the third inning, plating five runs, to take a commanding 6-0 lead.
Butler would rally an inning later, cutting the deficit to 6-3, however Bellefontaine was able to hold the Aviators off.
Offensively Butler was led by seniors John Myers and Logan Mann who each had two hits and an RBI.
Freshman pitcher Mitch Gremling got the start, working 2 2/3 innings. Senior Josh Edwards worked the relief role through the final 3 1/3 innings.The Aviators will look to bounce back tomorrow, as they play host to Hilliard-Davidson in a Saturday doubleheader. Game one begins at noon.
VANDALIA - The Aviators remained perfect on the season, handing northern neighbor Tippecanoe it's first loss of the season, 2-1. Senior pitcher Jake Larger (2-0) picked up his second win of the season, in what ended up being a pitcher's duel.
After a scoreless two inning stretch, the Aviators broke the stalemate in the bottom half of the third inning. John Myers got the rally started with single, followed by fellow senior Eric Hansman who also singled with a sharply hit grounder.
With Myers and Hansman aboard, senior Logan Mann delivered in a big way for the second straight game. Mann's line drive over second base brought both runners across for the 2-0 lead.
The Red Devils would answer the following inning with an RBI off the bat of Ben Hughes, who finished 3-for-3 on the night. But it wouldn't be enough, as Larger and the Butler defense thwarted any hopes of a comeback on this night.
Hansman finished the night with two hits, while Myers, Mann, freshmen Nic Martin, Mitch Gremling, and senior Jeff Lawson each contributed a hit each.
On the mound Larger pitched a complete game, allowing only one run on five hits while striking out four.
KETTERING - After building a 4-0 lead through 4 1/2 innings of play Monday afternoon, the Aviators needed extra innings to eventually knock off a scrappy Fairmont Firebirds team, by a score of 5-4.
Playing in his first game of the year after a preseason injury, senior Logan Mann came up big for the Aviators, hitting the game winning single. Sophomore Alex Murphy led off the 9th inning with a single. Murphy gave way to senior pinch runner Jordan Manning, who would come across as the Aviators' winning run.
Mann led all Aviators with a double, 2 RBI and a run. Fellow seniors John Myers and Pete Yorgen, along with junior Brett Bachman each added an RBI.
Senior pitcher Josh Edwards (1-0) earned his first victory of the season, pitching the final four innings. Edwards was preceded by sophomore Alex Schulke who got the start, striking out six Firebirds through five innings of work.
“We did just enough to win,” said head coach Trent Dues. “Schulke pitched a nice game, and Edwards came in and did a nice job closing it up. Murphy got a nice hit that last inning to get us going, Johnny (Myers) had a nice at bat, and then Logan (Mann) did a good job getting him in. We will take it.”
VANDALIA - With the clear blue skies and and near 60-degree temperatures, it sure didn't feel like a typical March afternoon. The Aviators also followed suit, looking like anything but a team playing it's first regular season game of the year, as they knocked off visiting Coldwater 7-3.
After two scoreless innings of baseball, the Aviators struck first in the bottom of the 3rd inning. Senior shortstop John Myers was hit by a pitch and after stealing second, and advancing the third on an error, Myers gave Butler the early lead by stealing home for a 1-0 lead. Myers finished the game with three runs and a hit.
Fellow senior Eric Hansman led the Aviators offensively with two hits and two RBI. Sophomore Alex Murphy also added an RBI, while senior Pete Yorgen and junior Bret Bachman each contributed a hit a piece.
On the mound, junior pitcher Jacob Larger (1-0) picked up his first win of the season, putting together six strong innings of work for Butler. Larger struck out two, and allowed only three hits.
“He (Larger) just makes em hit the ball and he keeps the hitters off balance, and that’s what pitching is all about,” Aviators head coach Trent Dues said. “He does a nice job of it, comes in at kind of a weird angle, so it makes it tough on the hitters.”
Seniors Todd Reichard and Josh Edwards combined in the 7th inning to close out the victory for the Aviators.
Butler returns to action Monday afternoon, traveling to Fairmornt to take on the Firebirds. Game time is set for 5:00 PM. If you can't make it to the game, be sure to click on the Live Game Updates link for pitch-by-pitch action.