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Prep baseball: 1A/2A sectional capsules

2A Byron

When: Wednesday, Saturday

Where: Byron High School

Teams: Erie-Prophetstown (18-9), Oregon (13-14), Byron (20-9), Aurora Central Catholic (27-7)

Players to watch: Zach Inskeep, E-P; Kenneth Cole, E-P; Alex Cain, Oregon; Ian Holley, Oregon; Logan Rohr, Byron; Ben Reiber, Byron; Matt Miller, ACC

Outlook: Oregon has the least impressive record of the four teams, but is capable of beating anyone with Alex Cain on the mound. He's slated to go Wednesday against Erie-Prophetstown, which had to beat Morrison on its home field to advance. Byron and Aurora Central Catholic are two battle-tested teams who will meet in the second semifinal, and the winner of that game will be the favorite to win the sectional.

Favorite: Aurora Central Catholic

Dark horse: Erie-Prophetstown

SVM prediction: Aurora Central Catholic

Advancement: Winner advances to the Rock Island (Augustana) Supersectional vs. Monmouth-Roseville Sectional winner at noon, Monday

1A River Ridge

When: Wednesday, Saturday

Where: River Ridge High School, Hanover

Teams: Freeport Aquin (16-2), Hiawatha (11-8-2), River Ridge, Eastland (15-7)

Players to watch: Ty Hartman, Eastland; Ramsay Truckenmiller, Eastland; Nolan Brannick, Aquin; Adam Feiner, Aquin; Will Corn, Hiawatha; Jace Williams, Hiawatha

Outlook: Aquin went deep in the football and basketball postseasons, and looks to have the goods to do the same in baseball. The Bulldogs will be favored against Hiawatha, which barely finished above .500 in the Little Ten Conference. River Ridge and Eastland split regular-season games, but the Cougars seem to be hitting their stride at the right time.

Favorite: Aquin

Dark horse: Eastland

SVM prediction: Eastland knows how to get it done this time of the year, with four regional titles in the past 5 years, as well as state tournament appearances in 2009 and 2011.
Advancement: Winner advances to the Lisle (Benedictine University) Supersectional vs. Gardner-South Wilmington winner at 10 a.m., Monday

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