Jupiter falls in baseball state semifinals


Jupiter struggled to find a rhythm against Orlando Timber Creek junior ace Bret Neilan in a Class 9A baseball state semifinal game and fell 4-2 at Hammond Stadium on Friday night.

Neilan retired 18 of the final 21 batters he faced and Timber Creek scored four runs in the final four innings to top the Warriors at the spring training home of the Minnesota Twins.

Jupiter (22-7-2) managed just two hits after the first inning.

“You give a guy a little bit of time, he gets some momentum and he starts rolling,” Jupiter coach Andy Mook said of Neilan. “He was really believing in his pitches and spotting them well. We just couldn’t get it going.”

Timber Creek will take on Orange City University today in the championship game.

Neilan (15-0) surrendered a two-out RBI single to Jupiter senior Andrew Martinez in the first inning to open the game’s scoring. Martinez’s single scored senior Mason Doolittle from second after Doolittle smashed a double to right field.

Neilan settled in after that and retired the next 13 Warriors.

Jupiter senior Zach Chivers, who has committed to Canisius College, took the loss despite a solid performance.

Chivers retired the first nine batters he faced, but allowed Timber Creek seniors Arnie Ruiz and Cameron Meehan to reach base on back-to-back infield singles to open the fourth inning. Ruiz and Meehan then each scored on a throwing error and Timber Creek took a 2-1 lead.

Timber Creek (24-6) added another run in the fifth when junior Didier Cancel scored on an RBI groundout after reaching on an error.

Jupiter senior Anthony Servideo led off the sixth inning with a triple to right field and scored on a Timber Creek fielding error to trim the deficit to 3-2. The Warriors had the tying run in scoring position with Doolittle standing on second base after a steal, but Neilan induced back-to-back fly outs to get out of the jam.

Neilan then helped his own cause in the top of the seventh with an RBI single to left field for the final run.

Jupiter’s Tyler Ward drilled a leadoff double in the bottom of the seventh inning but the Warriors could not manage another hit.

Chivers, who exited with two outs in the top of the seventh to an ovation from the crowd and hugs from teammates, struck out seven and walked just one but was hurt by three Warrior errors.

“He’s a bulldog out there and he has been all year,” Mook said of his ace. “Two complete games during our playoff run. He is a competitor and he will do great in college.”



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Sports

10 players to watch at 2018 Honda Classic … yes, Tiger Woods is one
10 players to watch at 2018 Honda Classic … yes, Tiger Woods is one

In advance of Thursday’s first round at PGA National’s Champion Course, we give you 10 players — and one Tiger — who could make a difference at the 2018 Honda Classic. The 2017 PGA Tour Player of the Year has been top-25 in each of his six events this season, including a victory at the CJ Cup in South Korea last October. Thomas...
Baker Mayfield meets columnist who called him a ‘future NFL bust’
Baker Mayfield meets columnist who called him a ‘future NFL bust’

Any negativity targeted at Baker Mayfield posted online typically finds its way to the former Sooners quarterback. One column, in particular, that predicted the 2017 Heisman Trophy winner would end up as a “future NFL bust” captured his attention. The reporter who wrote the column, Fort Worth Star-Telegram’s Mac Engel...
Saquon Barkley goes 2nd overall to Giants in Mel Kiper’s latest NFL mock draft
Saquon Barkley goes 2nd overall to Giants in Mel Kiper’s latest NFL mock draft

Saquon Barkley is not going to have to wait long to hear his name in April’s NFL Draft. The former Penn State star might be the second player to walk across the stage, according to ESPN draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. Barkley was the No. 2 overall pick in Kiper’s mock draft 2.0, which came out Wednesday. Kiper has the New York Giants...
Ohio State football: How will Buckeyes manage overflow at cornerback?
Ohio State football: How will Buckeyes manage overflow at cornerback?

During the week, Land of 10 reporters following the Buckeyes address pressing questions on the minds of the Ohio State fan base with our daily feature. To ask Austin Ward a question, follow along on Twitter and suggest a topic right here. Check back Monday through Friday as we dive into the Ohio State Question of the...
Athlon Sports ranks SEC’s best football-basketball coaching tandems
Athlon Sports ranks SEC’s best football-basketball coaching tandems

Athlon Sports came up with a creative ranking of the best football and basketball coaching duos in the SEC. Basketball season is in full swing, with the NCAA Tournament drawing closer, so basketball is on the brain for many. Still, football is never far from discussion when considering the SEC. On Wednesday, Athlon Sports ranked each football-basketball...
More Stories