For complete box score:
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. – On a picture perfect night in Colorado, Devin Smeltzer was the star in the 8-1 win for San Jacinto over Chattahoochee Valley in the National Semifinal, Game 18, at the Alpine Bank Junior College Baseball World Series.
Smeltzer, starting pitcher for San Jacinto, was feeling it early, striking out the side in the first inning. He would strikeout four of the next batters he faced over the next two innings, making his three inning total seven.
He teammates would give him a 3-0 lead after two as Caden Williams would hit an RBI single through the left side and Nick Shumpert a slow rolling two RBI single just out of the reach of the shortstop.
Smeltzer would add to his strike out total in the coming inning, striking out seven more in the next three innings. His teammates would add four more in the sixth to make it 8-1 after six. But the night belonged to Smeltzer. He would end the night with 20 strikeouts.
Smeltzer mentioned that the most he ever remembers striking out is 18. See his full interview in the post-game presser (when available). He was one short of tying a 57 year old record set back in 1959 and 1961 by Len Bell (1959) and Floyd Weaver (1961), both of Paris (TX).
This sets up the National Championship game tomorrow between #2 San Jacinto (52-11) and #14 Yavapai (48-20). Both teams are familiar with this game. San Jacinto has appeared in the national title game 14 times, winning five while Yavapai has been in the big game six times, winning it three times. Neither team has had a championship since Yavapai in 1993 and San Jacinto in 1990.