The Aurora Christian Eagles put across 3 runs in the top of the 7th inning to come from behind to defeat the Plano Reapers 5-3 in the season opener for both teams. The Eagles won the Class 1A baseball championship last June at the IHSA State Finals in Peoria. Several key players from last years champs are back for Head Coach Andy Zorger’s Eagles.
One of those returning players for the Eagles had the big hit in the 7th as Hunter Thompson had a 2 run double. Another key performer from 2018 Sam Tickle also drove in aa run in the 7th with a ground out. Jake Kuntzendorf who returns after an All-State year in 2018 and he hit and pitched well in the season opener as he threw 5 strong innings. Kuntzendorf struck out 11 Reapers, he allowed no hits or walks as well.
Bryson Schmidt three the first 3 innings on the mound for Plano as he struck out 4 Eagles allowing just 1 run on 4 hits. Mike Bruell three pretty well for the Reapers as well with 7 strikeouts in his 4 innings of work. Bruell allowed only 3 earned runs on 5 hits and walked just 3.
Patrick Johnson, Eli Gonzalez and Nathan Jernigan each had an rbi in a big 3 run 6th for Plano.
MJ Stavola got the save and JP Jira got the win pitching for Aurora Christian. Stavola was a huge part last years Eagles squad and he will be one of the leaders for 2019 on the diamond. Josh Smoot went 2-3 at the plate and Kuntzendorf had a nice day at the plate as well going 2-2 with 2 runs scored for the Eagles.
Patrick Johnson, Mason Accidentale and Dalton Cline each had a hit for Plano. The Reapers 3 runs in the sixth erased a 2-0 deficit and a 3-2 lead heading to the 7th. Tough loss but a good start against one of the areas premier baseball teams.