On Monday, Gilman put the finishing touches on a flawless 4-0 run through the winner’s bracket of the A conference playoffs with a 6-2 win over Spalding at Barrett Field. Gilman rode a committee of pitchers, strong defense, well-executed small ball, and a couple of timely doubles to victory. The third inning began in a scoreless tie, which changed when senior catcher Matt Wills reached on an error. Senior Matt Liddell followed with a beautiful two-strike bunt, forcing a rushed throw from the Spalding pitcher, resulting in another error and a first and third, no out opportunity for the Hounds. More aggressive baserunning followed as courtesy runner senior Jermaine Conyers scored on a wild pitch, and Liddell made a gutsy break to the plate on a routine ground ball to score the second run for the home team. Trevor Weiner provided the big blows, mashing a hanging breaking ball with two outs to double in two runs and give Gilman a 4-0 cushion. Weiner later added insurance with another double in the fifth inning, this time splitting the right-center field gap.
That offense was more than enough for the quartet of arms that took the hill. Senior Bennett Speicher worked out of a first inning jam to throw two scoreless innings, senior Owen Holmgren gave up a run, but made a highlight-reel putout on a deflected comebacker to secure the win. Holgren ceded the ball to Cooper Siddell in the fifth, who shut the Cavaliers down, striking out the side in the sixth, setting the stage for senior Peter Heubeck to enter to secure the championship, which he did when a routine fly ball settled securely into the glove of right fielder Adam Hicks.
For the Hounds, the championship win marks the culmination of a run of excellence, as the team has played for the crown in three of the past four years playoffs were held (Gilman also fielded an excellent team in the COVID shortened 2020 campaign). Head Coach Mr. Larry Sheets secures the second A Conference championship of his tenure, and the third in school history. Congratulations to the team, Coach Sheets, the baseball families, and the Gilman community!