Baseball splits in BRC playOne day after a seventh-inning rally fell one run short at Eau Claire Memorial last Thursday, April 28, the Raider baseball team broke a 4-4 tie with a pair of seventh inning runs and held on for a 6-4 victory Friday at Rice Lake.
By: Bob Burrows, Hudson Star-Observer
One day after a seventh-inning rally fell one run short at Eau Claire Memorial last Thursday, April 28, the Raider baseball team broke a 4-4 tie with a pair of seventh inning runs and held on for a 6-4 victory Friday at Rice Lake.
Hudson played from behind the majority of both games. They trailed by four going into the seventh inning Thursday at Eau Claire Memorial. After rallying for three runs to pull to within one, 6-5, the game ended on a strikeout with the bases loaded to give Hudson its first conference loss of the season.
Friday they improved to 4-1 in BRC play by battling back from two runs down to tie the score, 4-4, in the sixth before scoring a pair of runs in the seventh to win, 6-4.
Two of Rice Lake’s four runs were unearned, and the two Hudson runs in the seventh were the result of three straight walks, a misplayed pop-up and a passed ball. Head coach Ryan Huppert was pleased with the win but said the Raiders need to play better.
“We need to execute better defensively moving forward,” he said. “We need to play with more confidence, aggression, and make the routine plays on defense.”
Hudson took a 1-0 lead over the Warriors when Ben Christensen led off the game with a double and later scored on a sacrifice fly by Austin Lenzen. After the Raiders left the bases loaded in the top of the second, Rice Lake scored an unearned run in the second to tie the score.
Lenzen singled in the third, moved to second on a passed ball and scored on a base hit by Kellen Pearson to give Hudson a 2-1 lead but the Raiders left the bases loaded for the second straight inning.
Rice Lake got a pair of runs in the third and another in the fourth to take a 4-2 lead before the Raiders tied it with a pair of runs in the top of the sixth.
Billy Sarno and Miles Lewis drew back-to-back walks with one out before Christensen’s second hit of the game plated Sarno and moved Lewis to third. Lewis later scored on a passed ball to make it a 4-4 game.
Hudson got the go-ahead runs in the top of the seventh when Derek Krumrei, Matt Strachota and Sarno all walked to load the bases with one out. Lewis hit a pop fly to short center that dropped between the Warriors’ shortstop, second baseman and centerfielder that allowed Krumrei to score with Sarno being forced out at second. Strachota later scored on a passed ball and Pearson retired the side in order in the bottom of the inning to earn the win in relief of starter Brett Steinwagner.
Pearson relieved Steinwagner in the fifth inning and faced just 11 batters, striking out five, to earn the victory. Steinwagner allowed two earned runs on six hits with seven strikeouts and four walks through the first four innings.
Pearson and Christensen each had two hits and two RBI in the win while Lenzen had a hit and drove in a run. Strachota doubled in the victory while Lewis singled and walked three times,
Last Thursday at Eau Claire Memorial, a pair of Raider errors led to four second inning runs for the Old Abes and Memorial tacked on another run in the third to take a 5-0 lead.
Hudson scored a run in the fifth when Andrew Entenza doubled and later scored on a passed ball before Mike Hommes hit his first varsity home run, a solo shot in the sixth, to make it a 5-2 game.
Memorial pushed across another run in the bottom of the sixth that proved to be a crucial one after the Raiders scored three times in the seventh to make it a one-run game.
Hudson’s rally stated with three straight walks by Christensen, Krumrei and Lenzen to load the bases with one out. Pearson then stroked a two-strike single up the middle to score Christensen and make the score 6-3.
After a pop out for the second out of the inning, Entenza delivered another base hit with two strikes to score Krumrei from third. Hommes drew a walk to force in Lenzen and make it a 6-5 score but the game ended on a Lewis strikeout.
Lenzen started on the mound and worked the first 1 2/3 innings, giving up four hits with one strikeout and on walk. None of the four runs he allowed was earned. Jon Stoffer pitched the final 4 1/3 innings, allowing one earned run on five hits while striking out three and walking one.
The Raiders have a busy schedule in the next week, starting with a home game Friday, May 6 against Chippewa Falls at 5 p.m., followed by an away game at 10 a.m. the next morning at Mahtomedi, then another home contest on May 10 vs. Eau Claire Memorial. On May 13th they travel to River Falls.
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