Demaree Parsons started just two games on the mound during the regular season, but when he was called on to pitch for the New Albany High School baseball team in the Division I district championship game, he was ready.

Demaree Parsons started just two games on the mound during the regular season, but when he was called on to pitch for the New Albany High School baseball team in the Division I district championship game, he was ready.

Parsons pitched a complete game, allowing only one run on six hits and inducing 12 fly outs to help the Eagles defeat second-seeded Dublin Jerome 10-1 last Friday at Dublin Coffman. New Albany improved to 19-12 and advanced to play Mount Vernon in a regional semifinal at 2 p.m. today at Coffman.

Cincinnati Elder and Upper Arlington play in the other regional semifinal, with the regional final being played at 5 p.m. Friday.

"He was a little nervous to start, but once he got his mojo, he was pretty good," coach Bob Talpas said of Parsons.

Parsons got the start because neither of the Eagles' top two pitchers, Michael Van Straten and Wynston McMartin, was available to start. McMartin pitched all seven innings in a 4-2 win over Westerville South in a district semifinal the previous day and, according to OHSAA regulations, he could pitch no more than three innings. Van Straten injured his throwing shoulder in the win over South.

Parsons didn't do it by himself. Clutch hitting gave New Albany a good cushion. The Eagles scored their first five runs with two outs, and they stretched their lead to 8-1 with a three-run home run by Joe Morlan in the top of the sixth inning.

The district title comes in New Albany's first season in Division I.

"It feels great," Van Straten said. "Once we got near the end of the regular season and got some momentum, we knew we could make it far in the tournament."

New Albany had to rally to reach the district final. The Eagles trailed South 2-0 after four innings and 2-1 after five. But in the bottom of the sixth, Nick Bowman hit a two-run double to right field that scored Parsons and Sam Krebs. Christian Teeple then singled to center field to score Travis Smith, who pinch-ran for Bowman.

McMartin pitched a complete game against the Wildcats, allowing nine hits and striking out five.

"We knew Westerville South had some good hitters coming in, but he really stymied the middle of their order," Talpas said of McMartin.

McMartin was a late-season call-up from junior varsity and has played well with the varsity. The win over South was his fourth victory in as many starts.

"I figured, kind of like our last win (a 5-3 win over fourth-seeded Dublin Scioto in the second round on May 13), that if I could keep it close, that we could get some runs late," McMartin said. "If I had to sacrifice the complete game so we could get the win, I would, but it means a lot to do both."