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Josh Abel, De Smet

Josh Abel, De Smet baseball

A senior left-handed pitcher, Abel ended the season with three successive shutouts, including a two-hitter in a 1-0 win over Staley in the Class 5 semifinals, paving the way for the Spartans to win their first state championship since 2000. Against Staley, Abel allowed just two baserunners in the first five innings and finished the game with four strikeouts and one walk. In his previous start, Abel tossed a one-hitter with nine strikeouts in an 8-0 win over McCluer North in the sectional after shutting down Francis Howell North in a 3-0 district semifinal win. A first-team all-Metro Catholic Conference selection, Abel compiled a 7-1 record with a 0.78 ERA.