(Rick Hickman / American Press)
Last Modified: Monday, March 25, 2013 11:12 PM
IOWA — Justin Demary left no room for error this time.
A week after suffering a tough-luck loss to South Beauregard in Iowa’s district opener, the Iowa senior tossed a four-hit shutout to defeat Jennings 5-0, keeping the Yellow Jackets in the title chase.
Demary (4-3) allowed only one runner to reach third base and issued no walks while striking out 10.
“I hit my spots and let my defense work,” Demary said. “I love having the pressure on me because I have the confidence in myself to get it done and the confidence in my teammates to back me up. I have confidence in the team because of the work ethic that we have. We know what our goals are and know what we have to do to achieve them. When you have a tough loss, you have to come back with some hard work.”
Iowa (13-7, 2-1) head coach Sean Richard said he wasn’t surprised that his team has bounced back from the South Beauregard loss with a pair of district wins.
“Our team takes things to heart, they take it personal,” Richard said. “(Demary) wanted to bounce back and win for his team. That is the kind of kids we have. He wanted to come out and pitch for his teammates.”
The Yellow Jackets scored in the first inning on a two-out, two-run opposite field single to right by Garrett Dartez. They added three runs in the fourth on a single by Dayton Laborde and two wild pitches.
“We got the big hits when we needed, Garrett Dartez came up with the two-out RBIs early in the game to build some confidence,” Richard said. “That allows your pitcher to go out and pitch not under duress the whole game.”
Jennings (11-9, 2-1) threatened in the top of the first, getting men on with a single and error, but Demary got an inning-ending strikeout to escape the jam.
“I thought our kids stayed in the game, but we made too many mental mistakes and errors to beat a team like Iowa,” said Jennings head coach Jason Flanagan. “Demary got in there and threw strikes, kept us off balance and mixed it up. We never had any good at-bats, that good inning. We kind of have been living off that first big inning and we didn’t have it.”
Dartez finished 2-of-3 for Iowa.