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Blue Jays seize top spot for 7C playoffs

After peeling off 14 consecutive wins to finish off the regular season, the Plato Blue Jays can take some well-deserved time off as the top seed for the upcoming Region 7C Tournament.
With a 17-1 overall record, the Blue Jays comfortably claimed the top regional seed with a 3-1/2 game cushion over second-seeded Watertown.
Plato also won the Crow River Valley League South Division title by a full four games over Young America, which finished as the third regional seed and earning the final 7C first-round bye.
The Cardinals were the second of three teams to fall to the Blue Jays last week, with Plato finishing off the regular season by going 3-for-3 in the final six days of the pre-playoff schedule.
Plato officially clinched the CRVL North and the top regional seed by blanking host Hamburg 6-0 on Tuesday, July 17.
Dylan McCormick started on the mound and tossed seven innings of four-hit, one-walk ball at the Hawks, while striking out seven batters.
Zack Stockman went the final two, allowing no hits and one walk with five strikeouts.
Matt Odegaard and Nolan Lepel each drove in two of the Blue Jays’ half-dozen runs, with both Matt and Chris Odegaard scoring twice.
Plato remained east for a make-up game at Young America the next night.
The visitors scored six runs in the first inning and three more in the second before holding on for a 9-6 win.
Tyler Lang hit a home run and joined Joe Nix and Adam Prehn with two RBI in the game. Lang, Lepel and Matt Odegaard also all scored twice.
Prehn started and improved to 6-0 on the year after going five innings on the hill. Stockman relieved him in the sixth and went the rest of the way for the save.
The Blue Jays finished off the regular season by first rallying early, then holding on late for a 6-5 win over visiting Green Isle on Sunday, July 22.
The Irish took a 1-0 first-inning lead off McCormick before the hosts seized a 2-1 advantage in the bottom of the frame.
After Green Isle tied the score at 2-2 in the top of the fifth, Plato went back out front 5-2 in the bottom of the fifth and increased that edge to 6-2 in the bottom of the sixth.
The Irish charged back with three runs in their final turn at-bat, but could not claim the leveling tally as the Blue Jays clung on tight for a slim one-run triumph.
Green Isle nearly doubled up its host in hits with 13 to just seven for Plato.
McCormick earned his second win of the week, with Stockman locking down his second save in three weekly appearances.
Kyle Panning and Ryan Moriarty evenly split four of the Blue Jays’ seven total hits, with Panning also logging two RBI. Lepel scored twice for Plato.
The Blue Jays are now off until their regional playoffs begin on Thursday, Aug. 2.