On to Victory Field, Eagles to see Daleville
One school will crown a baseball program’s first state title in the sport on Saturday.
Lanesville (15-11) is slated to face Daleville (20-9) for the Class 1A Indiana High School Athletic Association state championship at 1 p.m. Saturday. It will be the first state final appearance for both schools in baseball. Lanesville’s lone other team state appearances came in softball (2005, 2006).
Four baseball state championship games will take place at Victory Field in Indianapolis. One game ‘ Class 4A Zionsville (30-4) vs. Roncalli (22-9) ‘ will take place Friday at 7:30 p.m. The remaining three champions will be determined Saturday beginning with Lanesville-Daleville game.
The Class 2A title game between Lafayette Central Catholic (33-1) and Providence (26-3) is slated for a 4 p.m. start. Lanesville coach Zach Payne previously coached and played at Providence. The final game at 7 p.m. will pit Western (15-12) against Northview (24-6).
Lanesville will be the designated home team.
Daleville, located between Anderson and Muncie, is a member of the Mid-Eastern Conference. Historically, the Broncos have won eight sectional titles, all since 1999 within Class 1A. The 2016 season marked the first regional and semi-state crowns.
Host of the Daleville Sectional, the Broncos scored wins over Cowan (4-3), Tri-Central (9-3) and Southern Wells (14-5) in the championship. During regional play, Daleville rolled over Turkey Run (11-1) and Pioneer (7-2). To earn a spot at Victory Field, Daleville defeated Fort Wayne Blackhawk Christian 2-1. Brandon Vermillion went the distance for the pitching win, striking out four and giving up five hits.
Looking at Daleville’s stats, Vermillion leads the pitching staff with a 10-4 record. The senior has a 1.95 ERA having pitched 75-1/3 innings. He has struck out 71. Spencer Horsley is 5-2 with a 3.20 ERA.
At the plate, Daleville, coached by Terry Turner, has hit a combined 15 home runs. Elliott Jackson leads the way with five to go with his .455 batting average. He’s driven in 35 runs. Other top bats for the Broncos include TJ Price (.421 average, 4 HR, 28 RBIs) and Vermillion (.429 average, 10 doubles, 28 RBIs).
Lanesville’s top arms include Brenden Bube, a junior with a 4-4 record and 1.77 ERA. He’s struck out 96 in 67-1/3 innings and also has a pair of saves. Other pitchers include lefty Mitchell Bailey (4-1, 2.22 ERA) and right-hander Ryan McCubbins (3-2, 4.70 ERA).
On the bases, Lanesville has swiped 101 bags, led by Bube’s 33 and Greg Daly’s 32. The two at the top of the Eagles’ lineup also are the top batters in terms of average. Bube is hitting .481 with nine doubles and 22 RBIs; Daly checks in at a .431 average, six doubles and a triple.
McCubbins has driven in 28 runs and hit seven doubles while posting a .278 average.
Victory Field is the minor league home of the AAA Indianapolis Indians, an affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates. The seating capacity is approximately 12,200 with field dimensions of 320 feet down the lines and 402 to center field. Victory Field is located at 501 W. Maryland St., a few blocks northwest of Lucas Oil Stadium.
Admission is $9 each day, and all seats are general admission.
Advanced tickets will be sold at Lanesville Junior-Senior High School tomorrow (Thursday) from 7 to 9 p.m.