Rabbits knock off Rebels in state title game

Published 10:52 pm Friday, June 13, 2008

JORDAN — Southland had to settle for a second place finish at the Class ‘A’ state baseball tournament after falling to Wabasso 5-2 in the title game at the Mini Met in Jordan Friday.

The Rebels (26-3 overall), who hit .381 on the season, had just three hits, as the Rabbits (25-6 overall) hit the ball early and often.

“We didn’t hit the ball extremely well, but (Wabasso pitcher Johnny Pistulka) threw real well. You put our miscues in with a couple of bleeder hits in there and that’s pretty much the ball game,” Southland head coach Scott Retterath said. “(Pistulka) hit his spots well tonight and he cut us down pretty well. I give him credit, he pitched a hell of a game against us. We hit it hard, but right at people. That’s all you can ask.”

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The Rabbits took advantage of some early Rebel errors as their first three runs were unearned. In the third inning, the first two Rabbit hitters reached base on errors before Drew Helling laced a ground ball through the left side of the infield with two outs to score two and give Wabasso a 3-1 lead.

“You can’t (have errors) in this type of ball game, but the kids played hard,” Retterath said.

Wabasso added two more runs in the fourth inning off of an RBI-double by Christopher Eichman and an RBI-single by Mike Wotschke.

“They can definitely hit. Everything I threw, they hit it,” Southland pitcher Brian Voigt — who went the last three innings — said. “When they put the put the ball in play and we bobble it a little, it kind of takes the wind out of you. They jumped out ahead and it’s kind of tough to come from behind.”

Southland scored first on two-out run scoring single by Derek Emanual in the first inning, but the Rebels didn’t have many more chances after that. They scored a run off an error in the sixth inning and had runners on first and third with two outs, but Josh Bamrick lined out to Wabasso’s first baseman, Mike Wotschke.

“If we had a couple of more innings we could of made it even closer,” Voigt said. “We just ran out of time.”

While Wabasso hit the ball well, Southland’s fatigue may have played a small factor. Kody Retterath and Voigt each threw three innings on Friday after each went seven innings on Thursday. Retterath allowed five hits and Voigt allowed eight hits.

“They went as long as they could. We decided to go with our seniors and we did the best we could with them,” Scott Retterath said. “Second in state, there ain’t nothing wrong with that. I’ve coached these guys a long time and it’s just amazing. It’s gonna be hard next year being on the field and not seeing the seniors.”

Voigt said the Rebels, who have six seniors, left it all out on the field.

“We just fell one win short,” he said. “We’ll be able to look back and say we gave everything. They were just the better team today and there’s nothing you can do.”

The loss snapped a 23-game winning streak for the Rebels.

“I don’t know too many teams in the state that wouldn’t take a 26-3 record, it’s just unbelievable,” Scott Retterath said.

Voigt and Retterath were both selected to the All Tournament Team.

Wabasso 5, Southland 2

Southland pitching: Kody Retterath (L, 7-2), 3 IP, 5 H, 1 BB, 3 R, 0 ER, 2 K; Brian Voigt, 3 IP, 8 H, 1 BB, 2 ER, 1 K

Southland hitting: Matt Schroeder, 0-of-4; Jake Chapek, 1-of-3, R; Brian Voigt, 0-of-2, R, BB; Derek Emanual, 1-of-3, RBI; Kody Retterath, 0-of-2, BB; Winston Smith, 0-of-2; Josh Bamrick, 1-of-2; Mitch Nagele, 0-of-1; Chris May, 0-of-3; Alan May, 0-of-2

Wabasso pitching: Johnny Pistulka (W, 10-3), 7 IP, 3 H, 2 BB, 1 R, 0 ER, 6 K

Wabasso hitting: Micah Gronli, 1-of-4, double; Holden Salfer, 1-of-4; Christopher Eichten, 2-of-4, double, RBI; Mike Wotschke, 2-of-4, RBI; Andy Rohlik, 1-of-3, BB; Jacob Bierl, 2-of-3, BB; Drew Heiling, 2-of-4, 2 RBIs; Johnny Pistulka, 0-of-2, RBI, BB; Derek Riley, 2-of-3