Vermillion Post 1 stretched its winning streak to five Sunday, completing play at an invitational tournament in Lennox with a dominating 17-3 win over Wakefield, NE.
Earlier in the two-day tourney Post 1 defeated Lennox, 4-2, and outscored Alexandria-Emery, 26-13, in a six-inning contest. The weekend's play left Vermillion with a 9-6 record.
Post 1 begins five straight days of scheduled games tonight (Friday) at Canton. On Saturday and Sunday the Vermillion ballclub will go back to Winner to defend its 2010 tournament championship there. On Monday Post 1 plays at Yankton, and on Tuesday the team will finally return home for the first time since June 4 when Harrisburg comes calling at Prentis Park.
Tyler Husby was one of the hitting stars for Post 1 in Sunday's win over Wakefield, driving in five runs with a 2-for-4 day at the plate that included a three-run home run.
After scoring a single run in the first inning, Vermillion opened the game up in the second when the key blow was a bases-loaded, three-run double by Jason Rasmussen.
Chayse Meierkort was the starting and winning pitcher, going three innings. Bob Osterberg pitched the fourth and fifth innings.
Post 1 – 4, Lennox 2
The opening game at Saturday's Lennox Invitational was a tense, tight struggle, but righthander Tyler Husby was equal to the challenge.
Though he allowed 10 Lennox hits, he also struck out 10 opponents, and four times he ended innings with a strikeout. The more dangerous the situation, the tougher Husby was as he and his Post 1 defense stranded nine Lennox baserunners. Twice he weasled out of bases-loaded, one-out situations.
Jason Rasmussen accounted for Vermillion's first run in the top of the first inning when he stroked a solid single, stole second and scored on Zach McDonald's RBI line drive to the outfield. Lennox tied the game at 1-1 in the second on a leadoff triple and single, but with the sacks jammed, Husby mowed down the next two batters on a pop-up to Husby himself and a called third strike.
The winning runs for Vermillion came in the third afater two men had been retired. Again it was Rasmussen who ignited the rally. His double and a walk earned by Chayse Meierkort set the table for McDonald and Stormy Mirtz. For his second at-bat in a row, McDonald came through with a run-scoring hit, and Mirtz did the same thing for a 3-1 lead.
Two third-inning doubles gave Lennox another run, and the game stayed 3-2. Lennox got a walk and two infield hits to load the bags in the fifth, but Husby got a strikeout and an infield force play to escape again.
Vermillion gained a gift insurance run in the sixth. Mirtz doubled, was advanced to third on Husby's grounder and scored on a ball hit by Scott Iverson. Miscommunication between the Lennox second-baseman and right-fielder allowed the Texas Leaguer to drop untouched as Mirtz pranced across the plate for a 4-2 lead.
Husby gave up a one-out single in the bottom of the sixth, but from then on he was lights-out, retiring the final five Lennox batters, three of them on strikeouts.
Vermillion's eight hits were divided equally among four batters with two apiece—Rasmussen, McDonald, Mirtz and Iverson. Alex DeVries, Derek Olson and Jake Reischel had two hits each for Lennox.
Post 1 – 26, Alexandria 13
The bad news in the second game of the Lennox tournament was that Post 1 lost a 9-1 lead between the middle of the second inning and the end of the third. But the good news was that, from then on, Vermillion outscored Alexandria-Emery, 17-4, in a game of 39 runs, 35 hits, seven errors, and six home runs.
D'Andre Fore had two three-run homers and a two-run double for a rare eight-RBI game. Zach McDonald, like Fore, scored four times and drove in four runs, one of them on a home run. Scott Iverson had five hits, including a homer, and three RBIs, and Jason Rasmussen also went long-ball. Tyler Husby, Nate Garrett and Caleb Miller also had two hits each. Miller drove in two runs, and Rasmussen, Chayse Meierkort, Stormy Mirtz and Garrett each had one run batted in.
Iverson's two-run blast over the left-field scoreboard highlighted a four-run Vermillion first. McDonald's bases-loaded single scoring two was the key moment in a five-run second, giving Post 1 a seemingly insurmountable 9-1 lead, which lasted about 15 minutes. Alexandria-Emery teed off on starter Nick Anglin with a single, a double, a triple and a home run, followed by an infield error and two more hits, necessitating a call to Garrett to come in from left field as a reliever. With runners at the corners and only one out, he retired the first two batters he faced.
In the bottom of the third, however, Alexandria tied the game with three runs, totally wiping out the 9-1 Vermillion lead. All three runs were unearned, however, an error at third base keeping the inning going and leading to a triple and a single.
The 9-9 was short-lived. Post 1 scored six in the fourth, the runs scoring on a sacrifice fly by Miller, a catcher's error, Fore's three-run bomb and Rasmussen's solo homer. A-E came back with three runs, two of them unearned, in the fourth to crawl to within 15-12, but Vermillion responded with four more in the fifth on four walks, Fore's two-run double, and a run-scoring wild pitch.
A-E got only one more run in the fifth. A nifty double play engineered by the veteran Rasmussen at shortstop cut off a potential rally. Rasmussen scooped up a hot grounder, his momentum carrying him across the second-base bag for a force-out, and he fired on to first to nip the batter. A-E died quietly after that.
In the meantime, Vermillion posted seven more runs in the sixth, and A-E did a lot to help the Post 1 cause, contributing two errors, a hit batter, and a walk. McDonald led off the inning with a solo homer, one of two hits he had in the inning. Fore's three-run blast came later in that stanza, and Iverson's double plated the 26th and last Vermillion score of the game.
Garrett, in his 4 2/3 innings of relief, got the win. He gave up nine hits, struck out three and walked one. Of the seven runs A-E scored during his pitching stint, only two were earned runs.