6/1/2017 3:39:00 PM Wildcats walk off with suicide squeeze in first round of sections
Chisago Lakes 5, Hermantown 4 (15 innings) A suicide squeeze by Joey Ferris scored Nolan Silver with the winning run in the 15th inning to give the top-seeded Wildcats a 5-4 win over the eighth-seeded Hermantown Hawks in the opening game of the Section 7AAA Baseball Tournament at Chisago Lakes Tuesday, May 30. Mitch Barrett started and went the first nine and a third innings for the Wildcats and Anders Brown pitched four innings of scoreless relief to pick up the win. The Wildcats advanced to the winner’s bracket of the double-elimination tournament and will face fifth-seeded Hibbing tonight at 7 p.m. at Pat Collins Filed at Chisago Lakes High School.
The Wildcats got on the scoreboard in the third inning. Adam Hanson walked and, one out later, Henry Trost walked to put runners on first and second with one out. Barrett grounded out to first and the runners each moved up a base. Brown singled up the middle to drive in both runners for a 2-0 Wildcat lead.
Meanwhile, Barrett – the Wildcats’ workhorse on the mound this season – faced the minimum number of batters through the first three innings, helped out by a couple of double plays. After he pitched out of a bit of a jam in the fourth, the Hawks finally got on the board in the fifth. After a leadoff single, a flyout and a ground ball fielder’s choice left a runner on first with two outs. It looked like the Hawks would be held scoreless when the next batter grounded to third, but an error put runners on second and third with two outs. After a walk loaded the bases, a passed ball scored the first run for the Hawks, followed by a run-scoring single that tied the game at 2-2. The next batter grounded out to end the inning.
The game was still tied 2-2 at the end of seven. In the top of the eighth, Hermantown pushed across a run on a single, an error on a sacrifice bunt, a groundout and a sacrifice fly to go up 3-2. Brown lined a single to right to lead off the bottom of the inning. He stole second and third and, with one out, scored on a double to left by Gabe Taylor to tie the game at 3-3.
In the top of the 12th, with Henry Trost pitching, an error by Brown allowed the leadoff batter to reach first. The next batter doubled to left to drive in the baserunner and put the Hawks up 4-3. The next player lined to third for the first out of the inning. Brown struck out the next batter and got the final batter of the inning to ground out to keep the score at 4-3. In the bottom of the inning, Dusty Rhodes singled with one out and stole second while Taylor was at the plate. In the eleventh pitch of his at bat, Taylor singled up the middle and Rhodes scored from second to tie the game at 4-4. The next two batters flew out to end the inning, but the Wildcats had once again come through when they had to.
Zane Brophy walked to lead off the bottom of the 15th and was replaced on the basepaths by courtesy runner Nolan Silver. Logan Bjorkman sacrificed Silver to second. Adam Hanson then doubled to center for what should have been the game-winning hit, but Silver slipped and fell down rounding third. Luckily, he was able to scramble back to third before being tagged out. Ferris stepped up to the plate. After taking ball one, the squeeze was on. Silver took off from third, Ferris laid down the bunt and Silver scored to give the Wildcats the win.
In Barrett’s nine and a third innings, he allowed three unearned runs on seven hits, walked three and struck out five. In one and a third innings of relief, Trost allowed on unearned run on three hits, walked two and struck out one. And Trost pitched four innings of scoreless relief, allowing one hit, one walk and striking out four.
River Falls 11, Chisago Lakes 1 (5 innings) River Falls scored eight runs in the top of the fourth inning and went on to beat the Wildcats 11-1 in a game shortened to five innings because of the ten-run rule. Only four of the 11 River Falls runs were earned as the porous Wildcat defense made four errors. Adam Hanson singled in the bottom of the third to drive in the only Wildcat run of the game. The game was played Monday, May 22 at Chisago Lakes.
Chisago Lakes 5, Monticello 2 The Wildcats scored all five of their runs in the last three innings and beat the Monticello Magic 5-2 last Tuesday, May 22 at Monticello. Mitch Barrett started and went six and two-thirds innings to pick up the win, allowing two earned runs of five hits. He walked three and struck out one. Henry Trost came in to strike out the final batter and picked up the save. Anders Brown and Dusty Rhodes each had run-scoring singles. Gabe Taylor drove in a run with a groundout and Adam Hanson squeezed in a run late in the game.
Mahtomedi 7, Chisago Lakes 4 Wildcat starting pitcher Trevor Johnson may have pitched well enough to win this one, but we’ll never know as the Wildcat defense made seven errors – so just one of the seven runs the Mahtomedi Zephyrs scored was earned. The miscues helped the Zephyrs take an early 5-0 lead and they went on to beat the Wildcats 7-4 late Wednesday, May 24 at Chisago Lakes. Anders Brown and Mitch Barrett each had two hits for the Wildcats, and Brown, Gabe Taylor and Logan Bjorkman each drove in a run.