The Spartans eliminated Maple Heights 6-1.
By JOHN BUTERA
STRUTHERS -- Boardman High's Mike Krieger fired a three-hitter, as the Spartans defeated Maple Heights 6-1 in a Division I district baseball tournament semifinal game at Cene Park Wednesday.
Boardman will play Shaker Heights for the championship tonight at 6:30.
Krieger (3-1) allowed just three singles. He gave the bottom of the Maple Heights lineup fits. The six through nine hitters in the lineup faced him 12 times and struck out nine.
Good support: "My stuff wasn't too good today," said Krieger, "but our defense was playing well and that's what it takes when a pitcher doesn't have his stuff."
Boardman manager Scott Knox echoed Krieger's comments.
"Pitching and defense will get us where we want to be," he said. "Right now we'll have to ride that and I feel good about our chances."
Knox thought Krieger wasn't in top form.
"He wasn't himself, but he battled and we played great defense behind him," said Knox.
Early spurt: The Spartans got all the runs they needed in the first inning when they parlayed four hits into three runs.
Andrew Good hit a single that scored two runs and Sean Curry had a run-scoring double.
Curry was 4-for-4 with three doubles. He also scored once and drove in two runs.
Good also turned in perhaps the game's biggest defensive play with the bases loaded in the first inning, turning a ground ball into a 5-to-3 double play.
Matt Repec also doubled for Boardman, while Giancarlo Silvestri tripled, singled and scored twice.
Weak hitting: "We just didn't hit the ball today," said Maple Heights coach Michael Lewis, "and there is not much you can do if you don't take the bat off your shoulders."
Boardman also scored single runs in the second, fifth and seventh innings.
Eight of the nine starters had at least one hit, as Boardman finished with 13.