Class 3A baseball state finals capsules

Jasper Wildcats
Record: 32-3
Ranking: No. 1
Tournament titles: 35 sectionals, 23 regionals, 12 semistates
State finals appearances: 14  — 1967, 1968, 1981, 1986, 1991, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2010, 2013
State championships: 5 — 1996 (beat Merillville 13-6), 1997 (beat Carmel 10-8), 1998 (beat Westfield 11-2), 2000 (beat Plymouth 10-3), 2006 (beat Norwell 13-12)
Postseason path: Jasper sectional — dismissed Washington 13-0 in six innings, Vincennes Lincoln 10-5 and Heritage Hills 13-0 in five innings. Jasper regional — dumped Silver Creek 5-1 and blanked Gibson Southern 5-0. Jasper semistate — leveled Crawfordsville 11-1 in six innings.
Notes: Jasper leads the state with its 14 state finals appearances. The Wildcats’ 23 regional crowns are also a state-best, and their 35 sectional titles are tied for the all-time mark with LaPorte. Jasper’s five state championships are behind only LaPorte (eight) and Lafayette Central Catholic (six). LaPorte has won just one since 1992 while Class 1A power Lafayette Central Catholic has claimed all six of its titles in the last nine seasons. ... Saturday’s romp over Crawfordsville gave Jasper the 180th postseason victory in program history. The Cats’ all-time tournament mark stands at 180-41, good for an .814 winning percentage. ... Of the Cats’ losses, two came to teams that will play in Saturday’s state finals — South Spencer in Class 2A and unbeaten Indianapolis Cathedral in Class 4A. The Cats also lost to Jeffersonville, which reached the Class 4A semistate. Those three defeats came by a combined four runs. Jasper also played Class 1A state finalist Vincennes Rivet, beating the Patriots 5-0. ... Nick Gobert’s 0.81 ERA ranks third in Jasper single-season history. Scott Rolen compiled a 0.64 ERA in 1993, a year after Cory Luebbehusen set the mark at 0.67 in 1992. This postseason, Gobert has four wins, a save and a 0.31 ERA in 22 1/3 innings. ...Mark Giesler’s 46 RBIs are the sixth-most by a Wildcat in a season. The only players to drive in at least 50 are Scott Kluesner (1997 and 1998), Rolen (1993) and Ben Schmidt (2003). ... Giesler (.374), Gobert (.342), Scott Stallwood (.360), Andy Knust (.342) and Ben Moore (.340) all hit better than the team average of .329, which ranks seventh in team history. Every Wildcat starter hits .295 or higher, and the Cats’ 306 runs scored are the most of any team in the state finals. The only Jasper teams to score more were 2001 (313), 1995 (307) and 1992 (307). ... Jasper lost 6-1 to Andrean in the 2010 Class 3A finals but scored at least 10 runs in each of its first five appearances in the state championship game. ... The Cats are 6-2 all-time in games played at Victory Field, including 4-1 in state title games.

Norwell Knights
Record: 32-3
Ranking: No. 3
Tournament titles: 14 sectionals, 6 regionals, 3 semistates
State finals appearances: 4 — 2003, 2006, 2007, 2013
State championships: 2 — 2003 (beat New Palestine 3-1), 2007 (beat Evansville Mater Dei 5-0)
Postseason path: Bellmont sectional — topped Bellmont 9-2, Heritage 5-4 in eight innings and Eastbrook 8-1. Bellmont regional — doubled up Delta 8-4 before niping NorthWood 9-8 in eight innings. Kokomo semistate — eased past Western 5-2.
Notes: Norwell is coached by Andy McClain, in his first year at the Wells County school after steering Indianapolis Brebeuf to a state runner-up finish in the Class 3A tournament last year. McClain replaced Kelby Weybright, who led the Knights to their three previous state finals appearances. ... Norwell has won 19 in a row, a string that includes two postseason escapes. The Knights used back-to-back walks and back-to-back hit batsmen to erase a one-run deficit in the sixth inning of their sectional semifinal game against Heritage. After Heritage tied the game in the seventh, Luke Hunter delivered a walk-off RBI single. In the regional title game, NorthWood scored twice in the seventh inning to tie the game at 8, but Josh VanMeter roped the game-winning home run an inning later. The homer was Norwell’s sixth of the game ... VanMeter was picked by San Diego in the fifth round of last week’s MLB draft. Drafted as a shortstop, he hits .450 with nine homers and 36 RBIs. As a pitcher, he’s 13-1 with a 1.39 ERA and 110 strikeouts in 75 1/3 innings. He was also a standout on the Norwell basketball team that advanced to the 2012 state finals. ... The lone non-senior in the Knights’ lineup is Jonah Patten, a University of Arkansas recruit who hits .349 and has compiled a 2.07 ERA with 57 strikeouts in 40 1/3 innings. Hunter adds 93 strikeouts and a 1.90 ERA in 70 innings. VanMeter, Patten and Hunter comprise a 1-2-3 pitching punch that has issued just 38 walks. ... VanMeter, Hunter, Austin Dettmer and Tailur Szarenski all hit .378 or better for a team that’s clubbed 32 homers and sports a .352 team average. Szarenski has six bombs and a team-best 41 RBIs. ... Norwell’s 2007 team was one of only three teams in state history to complete an unbeaten season, joining Evansville Memorial in 1978 and Brownsburg in 2005. All three teams featured future MLB players — Memorial had Don Mattingly, Brownsburg was led by Lance Lynn, and Norwell was paced by Jarrod Parker, now a starting pitcher in the Oakland A’s rotation. Jasper pelted Parker with seven hits and six runs in the 2006 Class 3A state title game, which the Wildcats rallied to win 13-12. Jamie Feldheiser, who pitched and smacked a homer in that game, is now a Norwell assistant coach.

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