Solid hitting, tough defense and clutch
pitching equal Vermillion Post 1 victory By Parker Knox
Sportswriter Vermillion Post 1 dealt a 15-1 lacing to Canton at Prentis Park last Tuesday for several reasons, including solid hitting up and down the lineup,�? a skin-tight defense all around the infield, clutch pitching and a knack for making the opposition pay dearly for its mistakes. The game ended via the 10-run rule�? in the middle of the seventh inning, but except for Coach Jason Gaultâ�?�?s sportsmanship, it could very well have�? come to an immediate halt�? via the 15-run rule in the sixth. With his team already ahead by 13-1 and a 10-run victory looming in the next Canton at-bat, Gault sent three pinchhitters to the plate.�? All three of them â�?�? Tyler Johnson, Mike Oberle and Mike Szymonski â�?�? smacked base hits.�? Gault slowed down the merry-go-round of Vermillion baserunners as best he could from his third-base coaching box, holding them up on two occasions when they likely could have scored and refusing to send another runner home from third on a wild pitch�? which likely would have resulted in another run. Offensively, Vermillion had at least two baserunners in all six times at bat. Canton starter Jake Versteeg allowed 12 hits while walking four, and he wasnâ�?�?t helped by his defense which committed costly errors�? in both the infield and the outfield, all of which helped Post 1 score six unearned runs. With Post 1 already up by 3-0, Sam McBride and Jason Rasmussen�? brought home�? runs in the second. McBride and Kyle Olsen drove in another run apiece in the fourth.�? In the decisive fifth Andrew Eidemâ�?�?s sacrifice fly made it 8-1.�? Rasmussen followed with a crunching two-run double, Reid Meierkortâ�?�?s single plated another run, and Olsen launched a rainbow into the outfield trees near the scoreboard for a two-run home run.�? Post 1â�?�?s other RBI in the contest was credited to Szymonski on his pinch-hit in the sixth. Vermillion starter Brandon Womack didnâ�?�?t allow a hit until the fifth, and some official scorers might have called an error even on that play.�? It was the only hit he permitted in his five innings of work. Womack did walk one Canton hitter in each of those five innings, but with a circle of friends such as his, Womack was never in trouble.�? For one thing, catcher Eidemâ�?�?s arm erased two runners â�?�? one trying to steal second and the other trying to swipe third base. And then there were the infielders.�? Third-baseman Andrew Nemec handled six chances without error, shortstop Rasmussen had five chances without a mistake at his position, and second-baseman McBride had four chances without a miscue.�? On two occasions there were two of the prettiest double plays of the season, one started by Nemec and the other by Rasmussen, and in both cases McBride was the middleman at second base and�? Olsen was a vacuum cleaner at first base, scooping balls out of the dirt. Grant Lueders relieved Womack starting in the sixth.�? He gave up a single in the sixth and a walk in the seventh, but fine plays by Nemec at third base wiped both of those runners from the basepaths. Lueders finished each inning with a flourish, sending the Canton batter down on strikes. �? Vermillionâ�?�?s 15 hits were spread among 10 batters, including three by Olsen, whom Canton never did retire, and two each by McBride, Rasmussen and Jerrod Freidel.�? Leadoff man McBride reached base by various means four times and scored three of Post 1â�?�?s 15 runs.