Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Head, Heinen Dominate, Pitch Hayden to 4A-I State Berth

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Head, Heinen Dominate, Pitch Hayden to 4A-I State Berth

Article excerpt

Jacob Head set the bar pretty high with his pitching performance during Hayden's 10-0 Class 4A Division I regional semifinal victory over Abilene, throwing a six-inning no-hitter.

In fact, in order for teammate Brogan Heinen to top it in the championship game with Atchison, he was going to have to throw a perfect game after Head faced the minimum 18 batters in his effort, having his only blemish -- a fourth-inning walk -- erased by a double play.

When Heinen hit a batter in the first inning, the perfect game was gone. But Heinen and Hayden could hardly be disappointed with the end result, a one-hitter in a 10-0, six-inning victory that sends the Wildcats (21-1) back to next week's state tournament in Salina.

"One hit, I'm sure he'll take it," Head said of Heinen's effort. "Even though we're teammates, we're competitors. Brogan usually throws first, and I want to go out and try to throw better than him. That's always tough to do because he always throws so well. Today, I threw a pretty decent game and had good defense behind me and Brogan then wanted to do the same thing."

How dominating was the Hayden duo?

Not only did they combine to allow just one hit, an infield single by Atchison's Adam Smith in the third inning, but they also had just one ball reach the outfield in the two games. Even then it was a pop fly to shallow center.

Yeah, they were on, though Heinen didn't feel like he had his best stuff, even though he struck out 10.

"I would say he had his stuff, but I didn't have mine -- I had kind of an off game," Heinen said. "I couldn't locate anything today. I really felt I couldn't put my pitches where I wanted them."

With Head, who had six strikeouts, and Heinen in full control on the mound, Hayden needed only to scratch together a little bit of offense in each game to cruise to the state berth. The Wildcats were a little slow starting in each game, but steadily strung together scoring innings and scored in all but three innings. …

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