FRANKTON — The Frankton baseball team ran into a sophomore buzzsaw in Tuesday's Class 2A sectional championship game.
Zack Thompson struck out 13 Eagles — and picked off three more — and top-ranked Wapahani (26-4) advanced to Saturday's regional with a convincing 7-0 victory.
"At the end of the day, you have to tip your cap to them," Frankton coach Brad Douglas said. "That kid right there (Thompson) is legit. He's not just a sophomore pitcher. He's being talked about nationwide, and he's being looked at by everybody in the Midwest. This was no fluke, and he had something to do with that."
Thompson entered with a 9-0 record and a 0.83 ERA. He surrendered just a pair of hits — a second-inning single and a fourth-inning double by Matt Kunce — walked three and hit one batter over 6 2/3 innings.
Frankton (16-10) left runners on third base in each of the first two innings, then never seriously threatened to score again. Thompson picked off a courtesy runner at first base to help end the threat in the first inning and picked off two more runners at first to end the fifth and sixth innings.
"We left a few plays out there," Douglas said. "It was kind of a microcosm of our season. Details. We talked about it from Day 1. Details."
Frankton senior Logan Weins nearly matched Thompson for awhile.
Wapahani's Taylor McKee led off the bottom of the first with a double, stole third on a missed bunt attempt when no Eagle covered the base and scored on a wild pitch. But Weins quickly settled in and retired 11 of the next 13 Raiders.
Hayden Castor snapped the streak with a double to lead off the fifth and scored with one out on a double by Jacob Walters. Six of Wapahani's nine hits were doubles.