Heartbreaking 6-5 loss puts Flyers in tailspin

Lindbergh’s strength next season will be pitching, coach says


The Lindbergh High School baseball team was one of the hottest teams in the area just a few short weeks ago.

The Flyers had won seven of their last 10 games and confidently sat atop the Suburban West Conference standings.

“Some of the best baseball we played all year was during our conference games,” Lindbergh head coach Darin Scott said. “The thing about this season was that there was a lot of parity in baseball throughout the St. Louis area. There were a lot of teams that could beat anyone on any given day.”

But that was before April 30 when the Flyers dropped a heartbreaking 6-5 decision to Northwest, which put Lindbergh in a fight to the finish for the conference championship. After eight days off be-cause of poor weather, however, the Flyers appeared to never recover from the loss to the Lions in league play.

“When we had that tough game against Northwest, we were off for eight days and I think that took the wind out of our sails,” Scott said. “We leveled off at the wrong time.”

Lindbergh fell in its next three games, including losses in the Suburban South/West Conference tournament and a 14-4 semifinal loss to Vianney in the Class 4 District 3 Tournament.

But the Flyers had one last chance to bounce back from their four-game losing streak in a rescheduled game against Lafayette May 18. The game would determine which team would win outright the Suburban West Conference regular season title as both were tied with 5-2 records in league play. But the Lafayette Lancers preyed upon the Flyers’ woes as they defeated Lindbergh 9-0.

“We knew that it would be emotionally tough for both teams because the postseason was over,” Scott said. “This was a tough way to end your season.”

Lafayette starting pitcher Mark Davidson was stellar on the mound as he handed the Flyers their second shutout of the season. Davidson gave up just four hits to the Flyers while walking one batter and striking out seven Flyers.

Lindbergh starting pitcher Bryce Snelson gave up five runs on four hits in five innings. The junior starting pitcher struck out seven batters and walked three in what was a solid pitching effort until the third inning when Snelson gave up a grand slam to Lafayette’s Brett Hendricks to give the Lancers a 4-0 lead.

“Bryce threw pretty well for five innings,” Scott said. “He made one mistake pitch in that game and gave up a grand slam.”

Lindbergh senior Tim Eikmeier pitched through the sixth inning with junior Jonathan Price relieving Eikmeier in the seventh inning.

But Price lasted just one-third of an inning, which brought senior Brad Renner into the game for the final two outs of the seventh inning.

Renner bailed the Flyers out of the inning with two pop-ups, which stopped the bleeding as Lafayette held a commanding 9-0 lead.

“We brought Brad in to end the charge in the seventh inning,” Scott said. “He threw two pitches and got two pop-ups for outs.”

Lindbergh loses nine players to graduation as Derek Davis, Tim Eikmeier, Dave Heine, Tom Henke, Nick Higgs, Eli Jump, Robby Meeh, Jon Meyer and Brad Renner leave some major gaps next season.

But the Lindbergh coach believes his team will have some strong points next season.

“Our strength will be our pitching staff,” Scott said. “We return some good pitchers and we’ve got some guys on the sophomore team that have some talent.”