Warriors in title tilt today
RAYMOND -- The Ridgewater College baseball team is back in business after winning two games on Sunday in the Region 13 tournament. The Warriors avoided elimination with victories over Northland Community College, 14-6, and Dakota County Technical...
RAYMOND -- The Ridgewater College baseball team is back in business after winning two games on Sunday in the Region 13 tournament.
The Warriors avoided elimination with victories over Northland Community College, 14-6, and Dakota County Technical College, 10-3.
Ridgewater and Dakota County will play after the Willmar vs. St. Cloud Tech high school game at Taunton Stadium. The winner advances to the NJCAA Division III World Series. The late start reflects finals week at both schools.
Rain washed out Saturday's games. Neither field in Willmar, nor the Spicer diamond, where tournament games were played Friday, were dry enough for play.
But the Raymond field was made available and it was in excellent shape by the time the tournament resumed yesterday at 2 p.m.
Ridgewater piled up 18 hits to eliminate the Pioneers and added 12 more hits against the Blue Knights, the team that had bounced them into the loser's bracket on Friday by a 5-1 score.
The Warriors also got solid mound appearances from Kyle Peterschick in relief and starter Brad Haag.
"Our pitchers threw well in both games," said Ridgewater coach Dwight Kotila. "But the bottom line is we hit the ball and scored runs."
Ridgewater also ad-vanced out of the elimination bracket last year at Willmar to reach the World Series for the fifth time in six years.
Kotila has three fresh arms to turn to for today's finale: freshman right-hander Jason Dorn, freshman left-hander Gary Albright and freshman righty Justin Koenen.
Also available is reliever Ryan Rodeck, who threw twice on Friday. Friday's opening-game starter Nic Locnikar might also do in a pinch.
Dakota County also has an excellent mound staff and good hitting, so Ridgewater still faces some treacherous heights to scale this mountain.
Ridgewater College 14, Northland CC 6
The Pioneers led 6-5 in the fifth, but the Warriors went on a rampage, scoring nine-run over the next four innings.
Meanwhile, the Warriors' Kyle Peterschick, who had relieved starter Justin Schroeder to start the fifth, would give up only one hit -- a solo homer to Nick Stenberg in the fifth -- over the last five innings.
Shortstop Jeff Brooks and first-baseman Keaton Gustin hit solo shots at Lilleberg Field. Tyler Horning, Scott Greening, Nate Alfson and Gustin each finished with three hits.
Northland 000 510 000 -- 6 7 2
Ridgewater 203 012 33x -- 14 18 3
HITTING - Northland: Nick Stenberg 1-for-2, solo HR; Matt Puente 1-for-4, 2b; John Grecier 3-for-4, rbi; Aaron Kjemus 1-for-4, Kyle Nowacki 1-for-4, solo HR ... Ridgewater: Tyler Steen 1-for-5, 2 rbi; Tyler Horning 3-for-6, 2 rbi; Michael Riewer 1-for-5, Jeff Brooks 2-for-5, 2 runs, solo HR; Brad Olson 1-for-5, 3 runs; Matt Bauer 1-for-6, rbi; Scott Greening 3-for-4, 2b, 3 rbi; Keaton Gustin 3-for-3, 2b, solo HR, rbi; Nate Alfson 3-for-4, 2 runs, 2 2b's, 2 rbi.
PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) -- Northland: Doug Peterson 5-11-6-6-1-5, Matt Nelson (L) 1Xc-3-3-2-1-0, Derek Neset 1-4-3-3-1-0, Mark Nelson Zc-0-0-0-0-0 ... Ridgewater: Justin Schroeder 4-6-5-4-4, Kyle Peterschick (W) 5-1-1-1-3
Ridgewater College 10, Dakota County 3
Brad Haag, a pre-season All-America, was in fine form. The right-hander from St. Cloud Apollo allowed only a towering three-run homer by Will Dahlgren over the short right-field fence in the seventh. Haag finished with a six-hitter with four walks and seven strikeouts.
The Warriors went up 1-0 in the third on a single by Brad Olson that scored Tyler Horning, whose two-run homer in the fourth made it 4-0.
Matt Bauer, who hit three consecutive homers in Friday's elimination-round romp over Milwaukee Tech, doubled and singled twice. Matt Riewer also had three hits.
Ridgewater 001 320 130 -- 10 12 2
Dakota County 000 000 300 -- 3 6 3
HITTING - Ridgewater: Tyler Horning 1-for-5, 2-run HR; Brad Olson 1-for-3, 3 bb's, rbi; Matt Bauer 3-for-5, 2b, 2 runs; Tyler Steen 1-for-4, Michael Riewer 3-for-4, 2 runs, 2 rbi; Jeff Brooks 2-for-4, 2 rbi; Keaton Gustin 1-for-4, 2 rbi ... Dakota County: Will Dahlgren 3-for-4, 3-run HR; Marcus Fitzgerald 2-for-4, Ryan Valdez 1-for-3
PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) -- Ridgewater: Brad Haag (W) 9-6-3-2-4-7 ... Dakota County: Jeremie Kruse (L) 5-8-6-5-4-3, Brad Lawson 3Xc-3-4-2-3-4, Ben Schroeder Zc-1-0-0-0-0--