PREVIEW: Regional 29 Baseball Tournament at Decatur

Base 6-10
Listen live online Saturday on Michigan Sports Radio and the Slocum Sports Network
to the Regional 29 baseball tournament from Decatur High School.   The action begins at 10 a.m. with the hosting Decatur Raiders facing the fifth-ranked Centreville Bulldogs.   At noon, the fourth-ranked Hackett Catholic Irish play the sixth-ranked Lake Michigan Catholic Lakers.  The winners meet at 2 p.m. with a trip to the quarterfinals on the line.

Centreville is the defending Regional champion and was the Division 4 runner-up two seasons ago.  They defeated the other three on their way to last season’s final four appearance.  They topped Hackett 4-2 in the District final, edged LMC 3-2 in the Regional semifinal and blanked Decatur 8-0 in the Regional final.   The Bulldogs are 18-2 this season, having defeated Howardsville and Marcellus in district 115.

Decatur was the Division 3 runner up in 2014, but the Raiders have been stopped by Centreville the last two years.  At 16-15 overall, Decatur dropped 17th-ranked and District 113 host Lawrence 6-4 and outraced Holland Calvary 19-9.   Despite the weakest overall record, having home-field advantage and a four-time state champion coach in Ben Botti makes the Raiders a significant threat.

Hackett Catholic is the highest-ranked by the final coaches poll, fresh off wins over Kalamazoo Christian and Bellevue for their first district crown since 1988.   The Irish are 25-4 overall and are hoping to have their deepest playoff run ever in baseball.   Last season, they set a school-record with 28 wins.

Lake Michigan Catholic is into the Regional round for the fourth consecutive year, although they haven’t advanced beyond Regionals in this stretch.   Their deepest run came with a runner-up finish in 2010.  At 26-5, the Lakers pounded New Buffalo and River Valley in the district tournament.

Listen live to all three games Saturday online via the Slocum Sports Network and Michigan Sports Radio.   Game one is at 10 a.m. between Decatur and Centreville, followed by Hackett and LMC at noon and the final around 2 p.m.

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