Tigers roll past Resorters in regional opener

by Greg Ceilley of The Review staff


BRAD OLSON of Howards Grove steals second base as Elkhart Lake shortstop Brennan Cain awaits the throw from the catcher in Tuesday night’s regional baseball game – Review photo by Greg Ceilley BRAD OLSON of Howards Grove steals second base as Elkhart Lake shortstop Brennan Cain awaits the throw from the catcher in Tuesday night’s regional baseball game – Review photo by Greg Ceilley HOWARDS GROVE – The Howards Grove Tigers used aggressive baserunning, combined with shoddy defense by Elkhart Lake-Glenbeulah, to cruise to an 11-1 win in the first round of regional baseball action here Tuesday night.

The No. 4-seeded Tigers, 21- 2, advance to the finals to meet fifth-seeded New Holstein Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Howards. New Holstein routed Random Lake, 14- 4, in the opening round Tuesday night.

Elkhart, the No. 13 seed, ended its season with a 4-19 record.

HGHS had only four hits but stole a whopping 11 bases and took advantage of seven Resorter errors. Seven of the Tigers’ runs were unearned.

The Tigers took command of the game early – scoring three runs in each of the first two innings to build a 6-1 lead. In the first, Dakota Rabe scored the initial run when he swiped home on the end of a double-steal. Bryce Hoffman’s groundout for an RBI made it 2-0. An infield error plated the third run.


AUSTIN EDGE, Howards Grove senior, delivers a pitch to an Elkhart Lake batter in Tuesday’s regional baseball game. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley AUSTIN EDGE, Howards Grove senior, delivers a pitch to an Elkhart Lake batter in Tuesday’s regional baseball game. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley In the second, the Tigers scored the first run with the help of two errors. Andrew Reinemann’s sacrifice fly upped Howards’ lead to 5-1. Rabe scored the final run of the frame when he again stole home after courtesy runner Caleb Holzman was caught trying to steal second.

The game ended in the fifth when the Tigers scored twice to win by the 10-run rule. Brad Olson stole home on the end of another double-steal to make it 10-1. Alex Strege scored the final run on an infield error.

Senior left-hander Austin Edge twirled a three-hitter. Edge, who kept Elkhart batters off balance with a nice mix of fastballs and breaking pitches, allowed zero earned runs and only one walk while recording four strikeouts.

“An excellent job by Edge. He mixed up speeds which made it tough on the batters,” said Tiger head coach Mark Weber.

“Overall, I was pleased with everyone. We were aggressive which is our M.O. [mode of operation]. Everybody did well on defense.”

The only run by Elkhart came in the second when Brennan Cain scored on a passed ball. Cain had singled with one out and moved to third on Jed Hersey’s base hit.

“Our defense let us down. We needed to make more plays behind our pitchers,” said Resorter head coach Davin Hill who felt good about his team coming in after the Resorters defeated Oostburg twice last week.

“I give Howards Grove credit, they hit the ball hard. They got good leads [on the bases] and they stayed aggressive all night.

“Edge threw well. He threw strikes and kept the ball low.”

Neither team had anyone with more than one hit. Reinemann led HGHS in RBIs with two. Strege scored a team-high three runs. Olson led in steals with three.

Starting pitcher Gunnr Johnson took the loss. Johnson allowed six runs (three earned) on two hits with a pair of walks, two hit batters and no strikeouts in two frames. Cain pitched the final 2-2/3 innings and gave up five runs (one earned) on two hits with two walks, a hit batter and three whiffs.

ELKHART LAKE 1

HOWARDS GROVE 11

Score by Innings
Elkhart Lake................010 00 – 1 3 8
Howards Grove...........330 32 – 11 4 1
Gunnr Johnson, Brennan Cain (3) and
Elliot Van Oss; Austin Edge and Jake
Fritz. W – Edge. L – Johnson.


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