The Martensdale-St. Marys (Martensdale, Iowa)
baseball juggernaut notched three more victories last week to tie the national record with its 83rd consecutive victory. Portsmouth (N.H.) set the record earlier this spring.
The Blue Devils won by scores of 9-1 and 13-2 in the first two round of the tournament and then defeated Southeast Warren (Liberty Center) 8-1 to capture the Class A district championship.
They will play Twin Cedars (Bussey, Iowa) on Tuesday for the substate title and a national-record 84th consecutive victory.
"The next one is the big one," Des Moines Register sports writer John Naughton acknowledged. "The pressure has kind of been on them all year. They talk one pitch at a time, one game at a time."
Naughton noted that Iowa's most coveted streak has been the 103 consecutive victories by the Palmer boys basketball team from 1986-89. It still ranks No. 5 in national history.
Should the Blue Devils win on Tuesday, they will not play until the following Monday in the first round of the state finals.Ethan Westphal
pitched a complete game with 11 strikeouts to get the victory over Southeast Warren. JD Nielsen
drove in three runs with a bases-loaded double.
Coach Justin Dehmer told MaxPreps, "We're really not concerned with the streak. It comes within our goal of a state title. That's our only focus – our only goal. Last night (title game victory) there was no big celebration. It was very businesslike.
"Our guys have handled the pressure extremely well. Umpires and coaches have told us how impressed they are with the way we handle adversity. We are one-pitch (at a time) warriors. We want to be comfortable with the uncomfortable. We have a pretty good mental system."