MOKANE — South Callaway senior shortstop Peyton Leeper hit a two-run home run and scored four times as the top-seeded Bulldogs easily handled No. 4 Father Tolton 12-1 in five innings in the Class 3, District 8 semifinals Monday night.
South Callaway — which also defeated Tolton in a 5-2 home win April 11 — raised its season record to 22-8. The Bulldogs share the No. 6 ranking with Lafayette County in Class 3 by the Missouri High School Baseball Coaches Association.
The Bulldogs will seek their fifth straight district title at 5 p.m. today when they square off against the winner of Monday night's late semifinal between No. 2 seed Hallsville and No. 3 North Callaway. Results from that game were not available at press time.
"We'll do what we do — the last six years, the message here hasn't changed," South Callaway head coach Heath Lepper said. "We don't try to reinvent the wheel.
"We'll try to do the things that put the odds in our favor."
The Bulldogs pounced on Tolton from the outset Monday night, putting up two runs apiece in the bottom of the first and second innings. South Callaway then erupted for six runs in the third to open up a commanding 10-0 advantage and tacked on its final two runs in the fourth.
Tolton (8-13) — which committed five errors — tallied its lone run in the top of the fifth.
Leeper was 2-for-3 with a double and two runs batted in as the Bulldogs totalled eight hits. Senior left fielder Tyklen Salmons finished 1-for-4 with three RBI and a run scored, while senior second baseman Drake Davidson went 1-for-2 with a double, two RBI and scored two runs.
Senior third baseman Dustin Loucks was 1-for-3 with two RBI.
Junior starter Tyler Lepper logged the complete-game win for South Callaway, giving up an earned run while scattering six hits. Lepper (6-1) struck out eight and walked two.
"We've talked all year about trying to be more aggressive on both sides of the lines, and we were able to do that," Heath Lepper said. "We had a nice, disciplined approach at the plate, and Tyler was able to go out and challenge hitters early in the count."