Thursday, May 21st, 2009
By Gary R. Rasberry
D-IV MAC teams eliminated by NWC
COLDWATER - For New Bremen, it was a tough way to end its season.
For New Knoxville, it was a tough beginning to the end of its year.
Both teams suffered differing types of losses as the Northwest Conference contingent of Crestview and Delphos Jefferson knocked the Midwest Athletic Conference out of the Division IV district tournament on Wednesday at Coldwater's Veterans Field.
In the nightcap, New Bremen tried to rally back from being down 9-5 in the bottom of the seventh as Corey Jutte hit a bases-loaded double, but a wild series of events at second base ended with a delayed out call and the Knights moving on with a 9-8 win.
In game one, Jefferson, the defending district champion, jumped out on the Rangers and never looked back, knocking the Rangers out of the tournament via a 23-2 five-inning drubbing.
The Knights (19-2) and Wildcats (18-5) meet Friday night at 7 p.m. in Coldwater for the ticket to go to Huber Heights. Crestview went 9-0 to win the NWC this season, beating the Jeff-Cats 4-3 in their conference meeting.
Crestview 9, New Bremen 8
Crestview 9, New Bremen 8
Crestview looked ready to wrap up in the game in the seventh, thanks to a grand slam by Ian Clay off Jutte, who had come in to relieve Calib Cox with two away in the fifth, snapping a 5-all tie.
Nick Ulrey, who came in relief of Ian Zollars in the fourth when the Cardinals (13-12) plated two to tie the game, had pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings. Ulrey got out of a bases-loaded jam with a double play in the fifth, but ran into trouble in the seventh, issuing a walk to Jared Cox and allowing a single to Adam Meyer before walking Calib Cox to load the bases.
Knights coach Jim Wharton brought on Kyle Balliet to try and close things out. Balliet got things going by striking out Dylan Crisp and enticing Ryan Evers to pop out to first for two quick outs.
Up stepped Jutte, already 2-for-2 with a double and triple. Jutte took a 2-1 offering to right, with the ball getting past a diving Ulrey. All three runs came dashing home as Jutte passed second, then hit the brakes to come back. The throw from right, however, got back to second baseman Tony Springer and it looked like the tag was made, but no decision came from the umpire.
After it appeared that the call would be safe, Wharton appealed to the other umpires to come in and discuss the call. After a meeting that took a short time, the umpires signaled out, sending the Cardinal bench and fans into a frenzy as the Knights celebrated.
"I thought the umpires made the right call. I really did," said Wharton. "I thought (Jutte) was in the air. I thought our guy tagged him. The thing I was telling our kids that if the call went against us, we've got to get another out, so keep your composure one way or the other, because the game's not over yet.
"Just a tremendous effort by our kids and their kids. Just a great high school baseball game."
New Bremen coach Greg Cox chose to praise his team's play rather than blame the call.
"The call was the call," said Coach Cox. "... I don't want to base this game on the call. The call, I'm not going to say (that) is what cost the game for us. What I want to take away from this is the New Bremen team that all year never said no. They never died and never quit and didn't quit on us tonight. I'm real proud of them."
Clay went 4-for-5, a triple short of the cycle, and drove in five of the nine Crestview runs.
"I've got to tip my cap to Crestview. That Clay kid, I watched him on Sunday (in the Knights' sectional final win over Lincolnview) and got some field reports on him. They said he was a hot hitter," said coach Cox. "He proved it tonight going yard with that grand slam."
The Cardinals struggled early as ace Andy Timmerman gave up five runs on seven hits over the first 2 2/3 innings. Calib Cox got the Cardinals out of a jam in the third and struck out the side in the fourth before getting into trouble in the fifth inning. After the first two outs of the fifth. Crestview took advantage of wildness as Cox walked the bases loaded, gave up a two-run single to Steven Rickard and walked Zollars to load the bases for Clay.
Jutte wraps up a solid career at New Bremen, going 3-for-3 with the three RBI, Timmerman added two hits and two RBI.
Jefferson 23, New Knoxville 2 (5 innings)
Jefferson 23, New Knoxville 2 (5 innings)
The Jeff-Cats took advantage of nine Ranger errors, including three in the first and fifth innings each, to pull away.
"This field has been a nice place for us," said Jefferson coach Troy Montenery, a reference to last year's district title win. "For whatever reason, we feel pretty comfortable (collecting 15 hits on the day)."
Jefferson got to New Knoxville starter Caleb Allen right away, sending 11 men to the plate in the top of the first and scoring five times. Allen was chased after facing four batters in the fourth without getting an out.
Jake Lawler came on to get out of the fourth, but could not get an out as the first eight batters reached base. Addison Wolf came on to get the final three outs.
The Rangers were able to score runs early off Jefferson starter Craig Carder. Lawler walked to start the first, stole second and scored after back-to-back groundouts for the first Rangers run. Wolf drove in Derek Dicke with a single in the second inning. The Rangers would get one more hit in the third before Carder retired the last seven batters of the game.
"Craig did a whale of a job," said Montenery. "We were looking for a quality start out of him and he absolutely gave us that today."
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