EDWARDSVILLE – The Edwardsville High School baseball team will be making its triumphant return to the state tournament this weekend at Duly Health & Care Field in Joliet.

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The Tigers will be looking for a second straight state title.

Back on Monday, Edwardsville beat Oswego East 5-2 in the IHSA Class 4A Super-Sectional to advance to the final four. The game prior, a 3-2 win over Minooka saw Tigers’ head coach Tim Funkhouser earn his 800th career win.

Those two games set the stage for this weekend.

Edwardsville (31-9) will be taking on York (25-13-1) in the state semifinals Friday afternoon (June 9) at 3 p.m. In the other semifinal, Brother Rice (25-15) takes on New Trier (25-7) at 5 p.m. with both games at Duly Health & Care Field.

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Edwardsville and Brother Rice met last year in the state semifinals and the Tigers went on to a 7-4 win. Brother Rice beat McHenry 14-4 to finish third in the state. The Tigers later beat Mundelein in dramatic fashion by a score of 4-3 in the championship game.

The Tigers return four key starters from last year’s state-run, all seniors, Caleb Copeland, Cole Funkhouser, Riley Iffrig, and Kayden Jennings. Add in some experienced pitchers Joseph Chiarodo, Logan Geggus, Andrew Hendrickson, and Alec Machetto and the team is ready to go.

During this postseason run the Tigers have scored 28 runs and allowed 17. Three of those wins were by just a single run and three of them were in comeback fashion.

The Tigers had to come from behind in both of last season’s state games and are no stranger to dealing with that kind of adversity.

It’s no doubt last season’s success and experiences will be helping Edwardsville out this time around.

Should the Tigers win, they will advance to the championship game on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. If they lose, they will still play Saturday, in the third-place game at 3 p.m. Once again, all games being played at Duly Health & Care Field in Joliet.

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