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May 15, 2018 - 11:00 PM

The Iola baseball team poses with its regional championship plaque after a 1-0 win over Girard in the 4A-II regional championship game in Pittsburg on Tuesday. From left, are assistant coach Ryan Latta, Kane Rogers, Derek Bycroft, Isaac Badders, Hunter Ba

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PITTSBURG — Derek By-croft’s grease paint was surrounded by beads of sweat by the time it was over.

Baseball is, of course, a team sport and if anyone tells you a single player won the game by themselves, they’re lying. However, in Iola’s 1-0 win over Girard in the 4A-II regional championship game hosted by Frontenac (but played at Pittsburg State’s baseball field due to the condition of the Raiders field), the junior ace came pretty dang close.

“He’ll never give in to anybody,” head coach Mark Percy said. “I’ll guarantee you that. He may not always come through, but it’s not for lack of effort. He’s somebody you love having on the mound. Even when he’s not on, he’s battling. You just don’t find that all of the time. I think some of our guys are learning from him a little bit about what it takes to get stuff done.”

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