By KEVIN HARRIS
American Legion Floyds Knobs Post No. 42 smacked 11 hits — seven for extra bases — to win the championship game of the Bob Haustetter Memorial Tournament over Lansing, Mich., 11-5 on Sunday.
Former Floyd Central High School standout Derek DeSpain led Post 42 (14-1), going 4-for-4 with two doubles and two RBIs. Teammate Tyler Cockerham was 2-for-2 with a triple, a home run, four RBIs and two runs scored.
Floyds Knobs’ Cody Sunderhaus was the winning pitcher. In six innings of work, the ex-Highlander surrendered five runs (four earned) on eight hits with three strikeouts and one walk.
“I’m very proud of the guys for showing a lot of dedication and commitment this weekend,” Post 42 manager Ricky Romans said. “Our goal was to win the tournament, and though it wasn’t easy after dropping our second game on Friday night, we came out and got the job done.”
Floyds Knobs reached the title game earlier on Sunday with a 13-5 victory over Ottawa, Ohio, in the semifinals.
Post 42’s Jacob Snodgrass and Ryan Jones each went 3-for-3. Snodgrass had three RBIs and two doubles, while Jones collected two RBIs. DeSpain was 3-for-5 with two doubles, four runs scored and three RBIs.
Kyle Sipes got the win on the mound for Post 42. He threw 5 1/3 innings, allowing five runs (four earned) on eight hits. He struck out four and walked three.
Floyds Knobs won two of its first three games in the tournament. Post 42 opened the tourney last Friday with a 19-8 victory in five innings over Connersville. DeSpain and Snodgrass each were 2-for-3 with four RBIs and two runs scored.
Floyds Knobs suffered its first loss of the season later in the evening to Richmond, 15-11. Against host Richmond, Post 42’s Josh Wenning was 4-for-5 with three RBIs and two runs scored.
“Our hitting carried us through the weekend as everyone contributed in some way,” Romans said. “Our pitching and defense were rocky at times, but we made quality pitches and good defensive plays when we needed to the most. Overall, it was a very good weekend of baseball for our guys.”
Last Saturday, Post 42 defeated Muncie in five innings, 11-1. Floyds Knobs starting pitcher Drew Reich tossed a complete game, yielding one run (unearned) on three hits with four strikeouts and no walks.
Post 42 will host Madison at 6:30 tonight at Floyd Central’s Highlander Field. Floyds Knobs will then play in a tournament in Evansville this coming weekend.