Big games from the same name: Nelson’s walkoff and Nelsen’s pitching lead LP to a home win

Published 8:23 pm Tuesday, April 18, 2023

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It doesn’t matter how you spell it, if your last name was Nelson and you were on the Lyle-Pacelli baseball team, you had a heck of a day at Marcusen Park Tuesday.

L-P senior Mac Nelson delivered a walk-off hit in the bottom of the ninth inning and junior Isaac Nelsen pitched four scoreless relief innings to earn the win as the Athletics outlasted Rushford-Peterson 4-3.

Nelson’s game-winner came with one out after Logyn Brooks walked and Landon Meyer blooped a single. It was Nelson’s first hit of the game and he was instantly mobbed by his teammates after the big RBI.

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“It took me a while to settle in, find a good pitch and swing on it today,” Nelson said. “That was my first walk-off ever. It was awesome and we brought a lot of energy in the last inning.”

Nelsen came into pitch with the game tied at 3-3 in the sixth. He allowed just one hit, and struck out three in that stretch after L-P sophomore Hunter VaDeer had struck out 10 without allowing a hit in the first five innings.

“VaDeer threw great too and it was a good outing for both of us. My teammates kept pushing me. We couldn’t get that run through until Mac came in and smoked one to left,” Nelsen said. “I saw (R-P before the game) and I said ‘we better go out and beat these guys.’ They looked kind of tough and they’re normally a good playoff team. We had to go out and get a good win.”

L-P tied the game at 3-3 in the fifth inning when Landon Meyer launched a sacrifice fly.

The Athletics (2-0 overall) finished the game with six hits and three of those came in the last two innings.

“We had to get somebody on base,” L-P head coach Brock Meyer said. ”That was the biggest thing. I knew we had the ability to come up with the clutch hit.”

R-P is a Section 1A foe and the Athletics were glad to get an early test against a tough team. Meyer especially liked what he saw from his two pitchers, who allowed just one hit and one earned run over nine innings of work.

“Our pitchers threw strikes and worked ahead of the count for the most part. For our hitters, it’s early in the year,” Meyer said. “We haven’t been outside enough and our seniors were all gone (on a trip) last week. It took us a few innings to get our bats going, but it’s good to have a test like this early in the year. If our pitchers throw like that, we’ll be tough.”

Rushford-Peterson 001  020  000 –  3  1  1

Lyle-Pacelli 101  010  001 –  4  6  3

L-P pitching: Hunter VaDeer, 5 IP, 4 BB, 3 R, 1 ER, 10 K; Isaac Nelson (W) 4 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 K

L-P hitting: Landon Meyer, 2-for-4, SB, RBI; Mac Nelson, 1-for-3, RBI, R, 2 SB, BB; Hunter VaDeer, 1-for-4, double, 2 RBIs; Dane Schara, 1-for-4; Isaac Nelson, 2-for-4, double; Jack Klingfus, 0-for-3, BB; Trey Anderson, 0-for-3, R, SB, BB; Logyn Brooks, 0-for-2, 2 R, 2 BBs