“That performance right there is what it is all about,” Rosepine head coach Jeff Smith said. “When you get in that spotlight and get in that big moment, players make plays.
“Ethan got in there and got it done. He is special. He is a high-profile guy, but he is humble, and he is hungry.”
It was Smith’s first state title in 23 years of coaching.
“I can’t even describe it,” Smith said. “I don’t even really know what to say.
“I am happy for our community and our kids. It is a dream come true. I don’t guess it defines you as a person, but boy, it sure does put the icing on the cake as far as a coaching career and what we do at Rosepine High School.
“We knew it was going to be a fight coming in. Their pitcher (Andrew Yuratich), what a performance by him. Coach (Wayne Johnson) does a great job with those guys. They will be back, and hopefully, we will be back.”
Yuratich was equally impressive, holding the Eagles (29-5) to three hits with eight strikeouts and three walks.
The only time the Eagles got a leadoff batter on was in the sixth inning, and they made it count. Logan Calcote led off with a double to left field, and Grant Ducote followed with a single to right field. Calcote saw the green light and raced home to score the game’s lone run.
“I honestly can’t describe it. It felt like everything was moving in slow motion,” Calcote said. “It was amazing. It feels awesome. Me and my friends have been playing since we were itty bitty in T-ball. In seventh grade we said we were going to win a state championship. It is an awesome feeling.”
Ducote was the Eagles’ top hitter at the state tournament, batting .714 with three RBIs, including 4-for-4 in the semifinals.
“The guy (Ducote) goes 4-for-4 the other day in the semis, we got Calcote on with a clutch double, and I thought about bunting him over to third,” Smith said. “This guy was 4-for-4 in the semi, we are going to roll with it. He comes in clutch. What a performance by those two.”
Doyle left two runners in scoring position in the second and third innings. Braden Keen got to second on a single and stolen base in the sixth inning with one out, but Frey struck out back-toback batters to leave Keen stranded.