Not even a no-hitter could get Adam St. Peter out of postgame running.
St. Peter wrapped up seven hitless innings to lead Joplin to a 6-0 win over Parkview on Friday at Wendell Redden Field, and then had to join the rest of the pitching staff for its routine postgame conditioning workout.
“That kind of takes the fun out of a no-hitter,” an out-of-breath St. Peter joked.
All kidding aside, St. Peter was brilliant on the mound.
The senior righty, who has signed to play football at Missouri State, struck out 10 and forced eight ground balls. He allowed just one ball — an Andrew Kendrick fly out to center field — to leave the infield. The other two outs were pop fouls to first baseman Tristan Ash.
All against a Parkview team that put up 13 hits, including three home runs, in a 13-11 loss to Joplin last week.
“My fastball felt really strong and everything was working,” he said. “My curveball was off a little bit, but I found it when I needed to.”
He walked three, including a four-pitch base on balls with two out in the seventh inning.
“Yeah, I was probably trying to throw a little too hard there,” St. Peter admitted. “I wasn’t worried.”
The Eagles improved to 8-4 overall and evened their Ozark Conference record at 1-1. They travel to Neosho today for a 1 p.m. nonconference game.
St. Peter, who is still recovering from an oblique injury sustained at the start of the season and a shoulder injury from football season, ended five of seven innings with a strikeout, including a punch-out of Wyatt Gann to end the game.
“He just continues to get better all the time as he gets stronger,” Joplin coach Kirk Harryman said. “He threw very well against a team that scored 11 runs on us last week. They’re a very good-hitting team and he did a very nice job of shutting them down.”
Brett Graham and Gavin Jones led an opportunistic Joplin offense.
Graham was 2-for-3, singling in the first and ripping an RBI double off the left-field fence in the third. He later scored on Ash’s fielder’s choice to make it 3-0.
“I saw a couple pitches I didn’t like and then he came back with one I did like and I took advantage of it,” Graham said of his double off Parkview starter Mitch Carriger. “He left one a little over the plate there. He was doing a good job of staying off the plate, but he left that one over the plate a little.”
Jones, also 2-for-3, turned on an inside pitch and sent a shot to left for his first home run of the season.
The Eagles, who took advantage of four Viking errors, had just three hits through five innings before four straight hits — started by St. Peter’s single and highlighted be an Ash RBI double and a Jones RBI single — made it 6-0.
It was the worst possible time, if there is such a thing, for the Eagles to produce a lengthy rally that forced Parkview to change pitchers.
St. Peter, who was lifted for a courtesy runner after his single, was forced to wait in the dugout for his change to finish off the no-hitter.
“Honestly, I was kind of thinking ‘Come on, let’s get these outs so I can go out there and finish this game,’” he admitted with a laugh. “I wanted to stay hot and keep going.”