Banse, Blue Sox hold off Hounds

Published 10:23 pm Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Austin Blue Sox's Jamie Adams steals second past the tag of Greyhounds shortstop Joe Kroc Wednesday night in the first inning at Marcusen Park. -- Eric Johnson/

Brady Banse hadn’t pitched in Marcusen Park in at least a year and the Blue Sox hadn’t beaten the Greyhounds in two years, but none of it mattered as Banse pitched seven strong innings and the Blue Sox prevailed 3-2 over the Hounds Wednesday.

Banse, a former Riverland pitcher, made just his third appearance for the Blue Sox this season, but he looked as sharp as ever after a slow start.

“These guys are always tough and it’s always a battle,” Banse said of playing the Hounds. “The field looks great and it’s top notch. I can’t wait to see what else they have planned for it. I missed Austin, so I’ve got to get down here every once in awhile.”

Austin Greyhounds pitcher Aaron Klatt delivers in the first inning against Austin Blue Sox Wednesday night at Marcusen Park.

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Banse walked two in the first inning and allowed two runs on a two-out single by Tyler Leopold, but he didn’t allow another run in the next six innings as he finished with seven strikeouts and allowed just five hits.

“I had the changeup working today and Andy Swank hasn’t seen a changeup from me ever,” said Banse, who is working a summer internship doing promotions for the St. Paul Saints. “So I busted that out at him.”

The Blue Sox (14-16 overall) took the lead for good in the bottom of the seventh when Brandon Rector reached on an infield single and he advanced to third on a throwing error by Hounds’ third baseman Zach Schara. Rector scored when Kyal Williams grounded into a double play.

The Hounds (16-18 overall), who have locked up the No. 1 seed in Section 4B, had six errors and just five hits.

“Our pitchers threw well and we need to play well behind them,” Hounds manager Matt Cano said. “When you give a team six extra bases, that’s a little tough.”

Kyal Williams closed out the game for the Blue Sox as he allowed just one walk in the last two innings.

“Some of our Riverland players played under (Matt) Raso and Swank and it’s a pride thing for them,” Blue Sox manager Jamey Pratt said. “Aussie (Williams) hasn’t pitched since he gave up a walk-off hit to the Mets and he was pretty excited to play these guys.”

John Kirby knocked in a pair of runs for the Blue Sox, who had no errors in the loss.

“We’re always a little more excited when we play the Hounds and we had no errors and we threw strikes,” Pratt said. “We battled through and didn’t get down.”

The Blue Sox will close out their season at Rosemount Saturday and they can force a three-way tie at the bottom of Section 4B with a win. If they lose, they enter the playoffs as a No. 5 seed and have to play a play-in game on the road.

The Hounds will close out their season at Rochester Saturday and they will host the winner of the play-in game next Wednesday night in Marcusen Park.

Hounds 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 — 2 5 6

Blue Sox 1 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 X — 3 4 0

Blue Sox pitching: Brady Banse (W), 7 IP, 5 H, 3 BB, 2 ER, 7 K, 2 HBP; Kyal Williams (S), 2 IP, 1 BB, 0 R

Blue Sox hitting: Jamie Adams, 0-for-2, 2 R, 2 BBs, SB; Brandon Rector, 1-for-4; John Kirby, 2-for-4, 2 RBIs; Williams, 0-for-4; Mark Harber, 1-for-3; Clay Eustice, 0-for-4; Brady Klingfus, 0-for-3, HBP; Carter Guthmiller, 0-for-2, BB; Jamey Pratt, 0-for-3; Quinn Yocom, 0-for-1

Hounds pitching: Aaron Klatt, 6 IP, 3 H, 3 B, 2 R, 1 ER, 4 K, 1 HBP; Bryan Toov (L), 2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER

Hounds hitting: Andy Swank, 1-for-4; Joe Kroc, 0-for-2, 2 BBs, R, SB; Steve Serratore, 1-for-3, R, BB; Matt Raso, 0-for-3, HBP; Tyler Leopold, 1-for-4, RBI; Nels Nelson, 0-for-4; Zach Schara, 0-for-3; Logan Spitzack, 0-for-4, SB; John Frein, 2-for-3, HBP; Zach Huntley, BB