Hounds squeak past Eagan in SupersectionsPublished 8:51pm Friday, August 16, 2013
Austin Greyhounds’ catcher Matt Raso made a huge defensive play and a delivered the go-ahead RBI as the Hounds beat the Eagan Bandits 4-3 in the first round of the Supersection tournament in Marcusen Park Friday.
The win puts the Hounds (21-9 overall) one win from the state tournament as they will play a state qualifier Saturday at 4 p.m. at Marcusen.
The Bandits (17-13 overall) had the bases loaded with nobody out and the game tied 3-3 in the fifth when Nels Nelson forced a fly-out to right field. The next hitter hit a ground ball and the Hounds threw home to Raso for one out and Raso threw to first for an inning ending double play.
The runner at first beat out the throw, but Hounds first baseman saw another Bandit runner trying to score from second and he threw back home to get the unconventional double play.
” had no idea he was coming,” Raso said. “They were hollering four and I was right by the plate. I waited for Braaten to throw and I turned and he was there. That was a huge play and it was a momentum swing.”
Raso put the Hounds on top for good when he singled in a run with one out in the bottom of the seventh. He also doubled in a run in the first inning to put Austin up 3-1.
“I was seeing him well. I had a couple of good pitches to hit and I took advantage,” Raso said. “We had a pretty good turnout and it’s always fun to have some fans on your side.”
Nelson picked up the seven-inning win and Zach Schara picked up the two-inning save for the Hounds. Schara came in with a heavy dose of fast balls and struck out three, while allowing just one hit as he slammed the door shut.
“When I go one or two innings I normally kind of empty the gas tank,” Schara said. “The adrenaline gets going and it’s possible that my velocity went up. Most of the time I’m bringing fast balls.”
Eagan 1 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 — 3 7 2
Hounds 3 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 — 4 5 1
Hounds pitching: Nels Nelson (W), 7 IP, 6 H, 1 BB, 3 ER, 4 K; Zach Schara (S), 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 K
Hounds hitting: Andy Swank, 1-for-3, double, R, BB; Jeremy Williams, 0-for-4; Nate Johnson, 0-for-4, RBI; Craig Braaten, 0-for-4; Matt Cano, 1-for-3, RBI, R, HBP; Matt Raso, 3-for-4, double, 2 RBIs; Tyler Leopold, 0-for-3; Joe Kroc, 0-for-3; John Frein, 1-for-2