Prep Baseball: Willmar falls to Brainerd in regular-season finale
WILLMAR -- The Willmar Cardinals stumble into the post-season with a 5-14 record after losing on Senior Night to Brainerd 10-2 at Baker Field on Thursday.
The Cardinals will need good pitching and clutch hitting to have a chance against No. 6 seed Chaska when the teams meet at 1 p.m. on Saturday in Shakopee.
"I never know which team will show up," said Mark Stier of the Cardinals, who are the No. 9 seed in Section 2AAA.
Willmar also needs to pick it up defensively. They had two costly errors that led to four unearned runs against the Warriors (9-5, 12-6).
Stier sent out three JV pitchers to save his varsity arms for what he hopes will be a run in the post-season. Josh Perhson threw into the fifth inning with some success. He gave up four hits, but only one of those was hit hard, said Stier. He did walk seven batters and allowed four earned runs in absorbing the loss.
Brainerd's No. 8 hitter, Tyler Lenz, drove in four-runs with singles in the fourth and fifth innings.
Gabe Amon's single drove in Jake Rambow and Dean Stier, who each singled, for both Willmar runs in the fourth.
Kevin Peterson pitched five innings for the win, walking none and fanning nine.
Willmar finished 4-10 in the Central Lakes.
Brainerd 10, Willmar 2
Brainerd 100 240 3 --10 9 0
Willmar 000 200 0 -- 2 6 3
HITTING - Brainerd: Pat Skogen 1-for-4; Jack Hegarty 2-for-4; Mitch Bzdek 1-for-4; Mitch McLean 1-for-2, 2 runs, 3 bb's; Tyler Lenz 2-for-3, 4 rbi; Blake Thiesse 2-for-4 ... Willmar: Jake Rambow 2-for-4, Dean Stier 2-for-3; Gabe Amon 1-for-3, 2 rbi; Nathanial Swoyer 1-for-2
PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) -- Brainerd: Kevin Peterson (W) 5-6-2-2-0-9, Blake Peterson 2-0-0-0-2-2 ... Willmar: Josh Pehrson (L) 41/3-4-4-4-7-2, Aaron Weideman 12/3-4-2-2-1-0, Matt Heitzman 2/3-1-3-0-1-0, Jake Rambow 1/3-0-0-0-0-1