GODFREY — A well pitched game on both sides went to the Edwardsville Tigers on Monday at Alton High.
The Tigers won 4-1 behind strong pitching performances from Chase Gockel and Andrew Yancik, while Alton’s Charlie Erler went the distance suffering the tough-luck loss.
With the win Edwardsville improved to 20-5 overall and 8-3 in the Southwestern Conference. The Redbirds dipped to 15-10 and 4-6 on the league slate.
Gockel went 4.2 innings, fanning 3 and walking 2 and allowing unearned 1 run while picking up the win for the Tigers. Yancik relieved him to toss 2.1 innings with 2 strikeouts and 2 walks to get the save.
Erler threw 7.0 innings for the Birds in the loss, fanning 7, walking 4 — all intentional — and allowed 4 runs, 3 earned.
The offense came in the first and seventh innings. After Erler got 2 quick outs in the top of the first, he issued an intentional walk to EHS freshman slugger Drake Westcott who came around to score on a double off the bat of Joel Quirin. Quirin later came around to score to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead after a half inning.
Alton scored its lone run in the bottom of the first. Steven Nguyen reached on an error to start the inning and later scored on a sacrifice fly by Steven Pattan to cut it to 2-1.
That’s the way it stayed until the seventh when Yancik helped himself out. Dylan Burris reached on a 1-out bunt hit and stole second before Yancik drilled a 2-run homer to left field to extend the Edwardsville lead to 4-1.
Adam Stilts smacked a 2-out double for Alton in the bottom of the seventh, but the Birds couldn’t push any more runs across.
The win was the 20th for the Tigers, marking the 37th straight season they have reached that win plateau. Current EHS head coach Tim Funkhouser’s father, Bill Funkhouser, was in his final season as the head coach in 1980 when they started that streak.
Next up for Edwardsville is a big showdown against O’Fallon at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday on the road. Alton returns to action at 4:30 p.m. tomorrow at Belleville West.