Rebels survive against ChatfieldPublished 4:56pm Saturday, June 2, 2012
With their season on the line, the Rebels turned to their newly found ace pitcher and he came through as the Southland baseball team prevailed with a 9-0 win to knock off Chatfield in an elimination game at the Section 1A tournament in the Riverland Complex Saturday.
Southland will now play Wabasha-Kellogg Tuesday at 5 p.m. in another elimination game.
Southland sophomore Lukas Anderson, didn’t have any significant varsity pitching experience before this season, stepped up with a shutout win as he struck out eight and scattered four hits while walking none.
“I knew the season was on the line,” said Anderson, who also celebrated his 17th birthday on Saturday. “With every start I’m getting more and more comfortable and we’re getting better in the field, so it’s easier to trust the guys behind me.”
The Gophers (15-8 overall) had just one real threat against Southland when they had runners on first and third with nobody out in the fourth, but Anderson got a strikeout and two groundouts to get out of the jam.
Southland head coach Scott Retterath said Anderson has come along way this year and he could be even better in the years to come as he adds a more potent breaking ball to compliment his overpowering fast ball.
“It came down to Luke being well on the mound today and the guys made the plays,” Retterath said. “Luke’s really developed as the year’s gone on and he’s going to be fun to watch the next two years if he can stay healthy.”
Southland opened the scoring in the first inning as Tyler Kressin and Anderson singled to start the game. Mike Goergen, who was 2-for-3 with three steals, drove in a run with a single and two more runs scored when Taylar Schwartz reached on an error.
Decker Bendtsen picked up the Rebel offense from that point as he finished 3-for-4 with a double and 3 RBI.
“He’s not the fastest guy we’ve seen, so we just sat back on it and good things happened,” Bendtsen said.
The Rebels (14-10 overall) started the day by losing the subsection title game to Kenyon-Wanamingo 18-0 to start the day. Southland mustered just two hits in that game and first nine Knights hitters reached base to start the game.
“With all of these new players, I don’t know if they realized the magnitude of today,” Retterath said. “We had a little discussion about that after the first game and I liked the way they responded in the second game.”
Bendtsen said Southland didn’t have too much trouble getting ready for Chatfield, even after the Rebels were coming off their worst loss of the season.
“We had nothing to lose so we just played with the mentality that we were gonna give it everything,” Bendtsen said. “(Scoring first) gave us a lot of confidence because Luke could just go out and throw his stuff.”
As the Rebels prepare for the game with the Falcons, they won’t have to do a lot of research. The teams split their matchups this year, with Southland winning 6-3 April 27 and the Falcons winning 17-1 April 24.
“It seems like every time both of us get here, nine times out of ten we end up playing each other,” Retterath said. “It’ll be nothing new and we both know each other. Hopefully we can have a good game.”
The winner of the WK-Southland game will have to beat KW (18-6 overall) twice to get to the Class ‘A’ state baseball tournament.
Southland 3 0 1 0 2 0 0 — 9 11 0
Chatfield 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 — 0 4 2
Southland pitching: Lukas Anderson (W), 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 8 K, 1 HBP
Southland hitting: Tyler Kressin, 1-for-4, R, 2 SB, BB; Anderson, 1-for-4, R; Mike Goergen, 2-for-3, RBI, 3 R, 3 SB, BB; Taylar Schwartz, 1-for-4, RBI, R; Decker Bendtsen, 3-for-4, double, 3 RBI, 2 R; Isaac Kloeckner, 2-for-3, 3 RBI; Tyler Kloeckner, 0-for-4; Dylan Heimer, 0-for-2, BB, HBP; Trent Reinartz, 1-for-3, double, HBP
Southland 0 0 0 0 0 — 0 2 0
KW 9 0 9 0 X — 18 13 2
Southland pitching: Sam Klaehn (L), 1/3 IP, 5 H, 2 BB, 7 ER, 2 HBP; Schwartz, 2 1/3 IP, 4 H, 4 BB, 8 ER, 3 K; Isaac Kloeckner, 1 1/3 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 2 K
Southland hitting: Kressin, 0-for-2; Anderson, 0-for-2; Schwartz, BB; Goergen, 2-for-2; Bendtsen, 0-for-2; Tyler Kloeckner, 0-for-2; Heimer, 0-for-1; Reinartz, 0-for-1; Alex Pitzen, 0-for-1; Chris Beert, 0-for-1