Baseball: Kloeckner leads Rebels past Rockets
Southland senior Ike Kloeckner experienced a day he will most likely never forget at Dick Seltz Field Monday.
After learning his grandma had passed away Sunday, Kloeckner had to focus on pitching and keeping Southland’s baseball season alive. Kloeckner responded about as well as he possibly could have as he led the Rebels to an 11-0 win over Randolph (11-5 overall) in five innings in the Section 1A West 2nd place game.
Southland will play an elimination game against Chatfield as it opens its third straight Section 1A tournament at 10 a.m. Saturday at Hudson Field in Rochester. The winner of that game will play at 1 p.m. at Mayo Field.
Kloeckner pitched a no-hitter and his only walk came with two outs in the fifth Innings. He also had a three-run triple to boost Southland in the first inning.
“Last night my grandma passed away and I thought about it all day,” Kloeckner said. “I came for the game and I was praying to her and asking her to help me out. She helped me out and I thank her for that. It was pretty hard and it was going through my head all game.”
Southland head coach Scott Retterath said his No. 3 pitcher gave him everything he could ask for in an elimination game.
“Ike pitched a hell of a game and in the last three games he’s been one of our most consistent guys in hitting the ball,” Retterath said. “If we can keep hitting the ball, I like our chances. We’re going into next weekend with everybody having time off.”
Southland loaded the bases to start the game and Kloeckner blasted a three-run triple to the left field wall to make it 3-0. Southland scored a pair of runs in the second and things fell apart for the Rockets in the fourth inning.
Chris Webber singled in a run and then Randolph committed three errors in a fourth inning that saw the Rebels tally six runs.
“Right away we wanted to jump on that pitcher and bust it open,” Southland’s Taylar Schwartz said. “It worked and they cracked and made a bunch of errors.”
Kloeckner struck out just three in the win, but he forced a lot of ground balls that the Southland defense took care of.
“My teammates made the plays behind me,” Kloeckner said. “I couldn’t have done it without them.”
Randolph 0 0 0 0 0 — 0 0 6
Southland 3 2 0 6 X — 11 9 1
Southland pitching: Ike Kloeckner (W) 5 IP, 1 BB, 0 R, 3 K
Southland hitting: Trent Reinartz, 2-for-4, 2 R; Taylar Schwartz, 2-for-4, 2 RBIs; Lukas Anderson, 1-for-2, 2 R, SB, BB; Kloeckner, 1-for-2, triple, 3 RBIs, BB; Chris Webber, 1-for-3, RBI, R; Paxton Gray, 1-for-2, R, BB; Alex Ruechel, 0-for-2, R, BB; James Landherr, 0-for-3, RBI, R; Josh Anderson, 1-for-3, 2 R