An outstanding campaign for Post 642 Sedalia ended after two games at the Mid-South Regional Tournament at Duncan Field in Hastings, Nebraska.
The Travelers (30-18) dropped their regional opener Wednesday to the Nebraska champs, Fremont. Kyler Simoncic started the game pitching and, trailing 4-1, was chased by a two-out, bases-loaded hit in the sixth. Landon Dull finished the game pitching for Sedalia.
“Things didn’t roll our way,” said Sedalia head coach Tanner McKee.
Texarkana, Texas champs, eliminated Post 642 with a 5-4 result Thursday. An unearned run broke the tie in the sixth. Will Knight relieved Connor Tichenor for the seventh frame, but a game-tying rally never materialized.
“As far as knowing it was an elimination game,” McKee said. “I think they were trying to do too much at times,”
Despite the short stay, McKee said he was pleased with the Travelers’ resilience. There were moments early in the season, he said, the team played like “crap.” Yet an undefeated streak through the zone and state tournaments propelled Post 642 to its second American Legion AAA Missouri State Championship since 2016 and second-ever regional bid.
“We weren’t the most conventional, we didn’t post the best record,” McKee said. “But as coaches, we never doubted them.”
McKee was overwhelmed by community support for the Travelers — home and away. He was enamoured by a sign of support from a local McDonald’s, received congratulatory texts from numbers he did not recognize and, while at a steakhouse in Nebraska, posed for a team photo with the owners, who were immediately fans of the Travelers.
After the season-ending loss, McKee told the team to look back on their campaign with pride.
“You look back for the rest of your life, you will always have it,” McKee said. “That’s something nobody can take away from you.”
Alex Agueros can be reached at 660-826-1000, ext. 1483 or on Twitter @abagueros2.