Jesuit High School defeated Dunedin 7-0 on Thursday (June 1) at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers to advance to the Class 6A State Championship game on Saturday (June 3) at 12:35pm.
The Tigers (25-6), who will be trying for the 5th baseball State Championship in school annals, will face Southwest Ranches Archbishop McCarthy (28-2), which has won 6 State Championships in the past 7 years. Jesuit has won State four times, most recently in 2014, when the current seniors were freshmen.
On Thursday, a lengthy lightning/rain delay and stifling heat/humidity could not deter Jesuit pitcher Jack Anderson '18. Backed by stout defense, Anderson allowed just five baserunners - all singles, no walks - in hurling a complete game masterpiece. He lowered his ERA this season to 0.79 (8 earned runs in 70 2/3 innings).
Jesuit rapped six base hits in the first three innings but didn't break through until Charles Clark '18 (3-for-3, 4 stolen bases) sparked a two-out rally in the 5th. Clark beat out an infield single, stole second, and scored on Joel Brewer '18's rocketed double down the line. Brewer then scored when McGuire Weaver '18's deep fly ball was misplayed.
The Tigers tacked on three more in the 6th, two on a base hit by Mitchell Thrower '17, and Thomas Bencivenga '17 applied the finishing touch in the 7th inning with a two-run home run that cleared the fence in left field.
Jesuit and Archbishop McCarthy played for the 4A State title in 2010 and 2011, with Archbishop McCarthy winning by scores of 6-1 and 4-1.
View a photo slideshow from Thursday's State Semifinal below: