Midgets one play short against Wolfpack
One more strike, one more out, one more hit or one less error-any of these could’ve helped Estherville Lincoln Central come out on top over Western Christian on Wednesday. However, the Wolfpack made the plays to leave Estherville with an 8-7 victory.
The visitors had a 3-2 lead heading into the top of the sixth inning and added an insurance run.
In the bottom of the inning, the Midgets scored three runs with two outs. Scot Schmidt had a single and Jeremy Hunt drew a walk. With two outs, Joel Kazmerzak had an RBI single followed by a two-run double from Marcus Christensen.
ELC started the top of the seventh with two quick outs. Kazmerzak had two strikes on each of the next two batters, but Western Christian wasn’t ready to call the game yet. The Wolfpack came up with a pair of singles. A double by Theo Barman followed by a walk a double from Brandon Van Engen led to four runs and an 8-5 lead.
ELC was all set to rally in the bottom of the seventh. Keith Fandel reached on an error followed by a single through the left side of the infield by Alex Arends. Scott Schmidt, who was 3-3 on the night, doubled to the right-center gap to bring in two runs. Schmidt was unable to score when Cody Prather singled to right.
Two groundouts to the left side of the field kept Schmidt pinned at third base. Kazmerzak struck out and tried to reach first on the dropped third strike, but Western Christian made the throw to end the game.
ELC was hindered by five defensive errors earlier in the game. Five of Western Christian’s eight runs were earned.
“Until we play good solid defense, we’re going to struggle,” said ELC coach Chuck Fandel. “We had some base running errors and the bats kept us in the game even with the extra errors.
“I give the kids credit for nearly coming back,” said Fandel. “I also give Western Christian credit-they made outs out of outs.”
Kazmerzak went the distance giving up eight runs on seen hits with four strikeouts and five walks.
Christensen was 2-3 with a double, a triple and two RBI. Hunt was 2-3 with an RBI. Prather was 2-4. Fandel, Arends, Doyle and Kazmerzak all went 1-4.
WC111 001 4 – 8 7 1
ELC010 103 2 – 7 13 5
WP: Ryan DeWitt. LP: Joel Kazmerzak