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Trenton falls to Richmond in quarterfinals PHOTO GALLERY

  • An second-inning error on a ball hit by Trenton's Nick Bondy (10) allowed the Trojans to take a 1-0 lead against Richmond in the state quarterfinal on Tuesday. Unfortunately for the squad, it was the only run of the day and its season ended with a 6-1 defeat. Photo gallery by Frank Wladyslawski
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For the first half of Tuesday’s Division 2 quarterfinal at University of Michigan, Trenton threatened to snap the 31-game winning streak of defending state runner-up Richmond.

Eventually the bats of the Blue Devils (34-3) started booming and the Trojans (34-7) didn’t have an answer in what was ultimately a 6-1 season-ending defeat.

Trenton had a total of seven bases runners in the first three innings, but could only plate one, as Richmond starting pitcher Dillon McInerney worked out of jams each time. Eventually McInerney settled down and allowed only two more base runners in the next four innings.

The Trojans did get on the board first, as Brady Tanguay and Cody Montroy both singled in the second inning and then Tanguay came across thanks to a Richmond error on a ball hit by Nick Bondy.

An inning earlier, Trenton’s Quinn Preston singled and starting pitcher Jerry Labell walked, but a double-play ball ended the threat. In the third, Labell walked again and Grant Dukus singled, but Dukus was picked off and a ground ball ended the inning before any damage was done.

On the mound for the Trojans, Labell also worked out of tight spots in the first three innings, as the Devils had five total hits, but never scored.

To end the first, Labell struck out Richmond cleanup man Austin Harvey, in the second he got Jake Thomas looking and in the third he got Evan Kratt to ground out with two outs. The big senior hurler threw 4.1 innings on Tuesday with five strikeouts and no walks, along with nine hits and four earned runs allowed.

Things started to come apart in the fourth inning for Trenton, as singles by the Devils’ Daniel Fistler and Dustin Leach both drove in runs and gave the team a 2-1 advantage.

Three more Richmond runs were added in the fifth inning, as Harvey, Kratt and Jake Schmidt all had one RBI and Zach Leach knocked one in the sixth to make it a 6-1 game.

Dukus replaced Labell on the mound during the fifth inning and for the day tossed 1.2 innings and allowed one walk, three hits and two earned runs. On the other side, McInerney went the distance for the Devils without allowing an earned run and along the way he struck out eight while giving up six hits and two walks

At the plate, Solomon Markus was 2-for-3 for the locals, while one hit each came from Tanguay, Preston, Montroy and Dukus and Tanguay scored the team’s lone run.

A big positive that Trenton Coach Todd Szalka took away from Tuesday was that his squad was sound in the field and made the powerhouse Richmond team earn its victory at the plate.

“The thing that I like about what we did today is that we didn’t kick the ball around,” he said. “We didn’t make any errors. Sometimes you’re in the state tournament, you’re going to run into a team that plays better than you on that day and they definitely played better than us.”

Trenton wrapped up 2014 with the most victories in school history, a feat achieved by a young squad that had lost several talented players to graduation the previous season.

“We knew that we had a lot of talent, but we thought we were going to have to foster that talent and there were going to be some growing pains along the way,” Szalka said. “They came around a whole lot sooner than I thought and it’s a testament to them and their will and the way that they played together as a team this year.”

Last Updated: 6/10/2014 10:40:58 PM EST

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