Early surge lifts Panthers over Rockets


WILL BIRKHOLZ of Plymouth hits a smash off the Cedar Grove first baseman’s glove which scored a run in the third inning of Thursday’s baseball game. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley WILL BIRKHOLZ of Plymouth hits a smash off the Cedar Grove first baseman’s glove which scored a run in the third inning of Thursday’s baseball game. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley CEDAR GROVE – The Plymouth Panthers jumped out to a 6-1 lead after three innings to fuel a 9-6 win over Cedar Grove-Belgium in Big East Conference baseball action here Thursday evening.

The Panthers, winners of 10 in a row, raised their BEC large-school school division record to 19-2 (23-5 overall). PHS has clinched the division title. The Rockets (14- 12 overall) finished 14-8 and third place in the BEC small school division.

PHS took advantage of Rocket miscues to score two of its four runs in the top of the second which put the Panthers up 5-0. Sam Miller scored on a wild pitch, and a throwing error by a Rocket infielder plated a run.

In the third, the Panthers made it 6-1 when Will Birkholz hit a smash off the first baseman’s glove which brought home a run. The fielder was charged with a tough error.


SAM MILLER of Plymouth attempts to break up a double play as Cedar Grove second baseman Paul Simmelink throws to first in Thursday’s baseball game. Miller was forced out at second and the runner was safe at first. Shortstop Jason Bohlmann looks on. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley SAM MILLER of Plymouth attempts to break up a double play as Cedar Grove second baseman Paul Simmelink throws to first in Thursday’s baseball game. Miller was forced out at second and the runner was safe at first. Shortstop Jason Bohlmann looks on. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley PHS starting pitcher Holden Reilly notched the victory. Reilly allowed four runs (all earned) on seven hits with three walks and three strikeouts in five innings.

Ben Picard threw the final two frames for PHS to earn a save. Picard gave up two runs (both unearned) on three hits with three walks and two strikeouts.

Miller and Joe Steinhardt led the Panthers in hits with two each. Taylor Struve, Isaac Fintak, Cooper Gosse, Birkholz and Miller had one RBI each. Aiden Reilly scored a team-high three runs and led in steals with two.

“I was happy to get up early and be able to hold on to the lead. We took advantage of some of their mishaps,” said Panther head coach Butch Cain.

“Holden pitched well. Ben did a nice job [pitching] as well. They threw strikes and trusted their defense.

“We put the ball in play and were aggressive on the bases. We knew if we put pressure on their defense that we could score runs early,” said Cain.

“Will [catcher] called a good game and did a good job of blocking pitches.”

Cameron Kirst led the Rockets’ offense with three hits and Tyler Kraus had two. Bryce Morgan had a team best three RBIs.

Jason Von Heimburg took the loss. Von Heimburg started and went five innings – allowing seven runs (five earned) on six hits with three walks and two strikeouts.


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