Redfield knocks off Red Sox at tourney

Redfield knocks off Red Sox at tourney by Steven Thum For the fourth year in a row, the Vermillion Red Sox were knocked out of the State �B� Amateur Baseball Tournament in the quarterfinal round. This time, it was the 2000 �B� champions, Redfield Dairy Queen, who ended the season for the Red Sox by winning a 4-3 contest Aug. 21 at Cadwell Park in Mitchell.

Vermillion got on the scoreboard right away against Redfield starter Lonnie Stover. Dustin Moore led off with a single, stole second, and scored on a one out double by Jason Huska. Chris Belding followed with a single to put runners on the corners, but Stover retired the next two batters to get out of the jam without any more damage.

The Red Sox put another run on the board in the bottom of the fourth as Steve Fejfar led off with a single, then was replaced by courtesy runner Jason Gault. Colby Lessmann laid down a perfect bunt to move Gault to second. Jon Merrigan singled to bring home Gault to make it 2-0.

Stover recovered to get Jim Stegge to ground into an inning ending double play.

Meanwhile, Jay Berkenpas, the Red Sox starter, was cruising on the hill, shutting out Redfield for the first five innings.

But things fell apart for Berkenpas in the top of the sixth. Joel Osborn and Rich Osborn led off the inning with back-to-back singles. Keith Gall hit a shot down the left field line that kicked up chalk, and was good for a two-RBI double to tie the game up. Doug Shaffer singled and that hit brought home Gall to give Redfield a 3-2 advantage.

Vermillion responded right away in the bottom of the sixth. Belding drew a base on balls to lead off. A Stover wild pitch moved Belding to second, and a ground out by Fejfar moved Belding to third with just one out. Lessmann singled to plate Belding and the game was tied at 3-3.

Redfield threatened in the top of the seventh as Brent Osborn led off with a single, and Berkenpas walked Joel Osborn. A sacrifice bunt moved both runners into scoring position, and the Red Sox manager turned to reliever Rob Miller, a pickup player from the Vermillion Grey Sox. Miller got the next two batters out without allowing a run to score to preserve the tie.

It looked like the Red Sox were going to go ahead in the bottom of the seventh as Jay Merrigan led off with a double, but Stover bore down to retire the top of the Red Sox order and Merrigan was stranded. Neither team scored in the eighth.

In the top of the ninth, two tough grounders were mishandled by the Red Sox to put two runners on board. A comeback grounder to Miller was fielded for the first out, but two runners were now in scoring position.

Gall was walked intentionally to load the bases with one out.

Doug Shaffer was up next for Redfield, and he hit a liner up the middle that was caught by Miller for the second out. Next up for Redfield was pickup player Corey Fiedler from Mobridge/Selby. Miller worked a full count to Fiedler, but missed on the payoff pitch for a bases loaded walk to bring in a run.

Miller got the next batter out on a ground out, but the Red Sox had just one time at bat left, and they were down by a run.

Stover retired the first two batters, but Jay Merrigan singled to keep hope alive for the Red Sox. Next up was Moore, but his grounder was fielded by Stover, who threw to first for the game ending out.

Stover went the distance for Redfield, allowing three runs on nine hits, striking out six and walking just one.

Berkenpas pitched six and one-third innings, allowing three runs on nine hits, walking two and fanning two.

Miller was the tough luck loser for the Red Sox. He gave up one unearned run on one hit in two and two-thirds innings of relief. Miller also walked two and struck out two.

Fiedler singled twice for Redfield, and had an RBI when he drew the bases loaded walk. Gall doubled in two runs.

Jay Merrigan singled and doubled. Jon Merrigan and Lessmann each had RBI singles, while Huska had an RBI double.

With the loss, the Red Sox finished the season at 29-3. Redfield was beaten 4-3 by Canova in the semifinals.

Dell Rapids PBR beat Canova 14-13 to win the �B� title, their 10th in 13 years.

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