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St. Stephen Steves
WP: Chad Weiss (Pierz Lakers) 9IP 1r 7h 14k 0bb 1hp
LP: Bo Schmitz 7+IP 2r 3h 9k 5bb
Blake Guggenberger 1IP 2r 3h 1k 0bb
Matt Tautges 0-1 bb(3), sb(3), run
Lane Girtz 2-4 sb(2), 2 runs
Aaron Weber 1-4 2 rbi
-Noah Cekalla 0-0 run
Noah Boser 0-2 bb, sac
Matt Kummet 2-4 2 rbi
Mark Kahl 0-4
Joe Kahl 1-3 bb, sb(2)
Travis Kahl 0-3
Jack Suska 0-3
Bo Schmitz 1-4
Jake Schelonka 0-4
Tony Schmitz 1-4 2B, run
Blake Guggenberger 2-4
Austin Guggenberger 1-3 hp
Riley Hartwig 0-4
Ben Omann 2-4
Brandon Waldvogel 0-3 sac
-Ben Bierscheid 0-0
Cody Wolhart 0-4 sb
The Buckman Billygoats broke a 1-1 tie with 3 runs in the bottom of the 8th to defeat the St. Stephen Steves 4-1 on Sunday in Avon in a Class C State Play-In game.
It was an especially short night for the Billygoats, as their 8-5 Elimination Game victory over Upsala on Saturday night in Pierz didn't end until 12:21 am! The Steves were in the position of having to rebound from their 20-0 loss to Nisswa on Saturday afternoon.
Buckman handed the starting pitching assignment to their draftee from the Pierz Lakers, Chad Weiss. The veteran right-hander, the 2010 Region 8C Tournament MVP, rewarded Buckman for the faith they showed in drafting him by turning his his finest performance of the season, a Complete Game, 14 strikeout, no walk effort.
St. Stephen countered with hard-throwing righty Bo Schmitz. As I looked back at all the Steves Victory League game summaries, the only prior pitching appearance for Bo that I saw was a June 23rd appearance against Opole where he worked the bottom of the 9th to earn a Save in a 3-2 Steves win. So obviously St. Stephen was extremely confidant in Bo's ability to come through in their biggest game of the season!
With the coin flip determining that Buckman would get the final at-bat of the game, the Steves went to work in the top of the 1st when Bo Schmitz led off with sharp single to center off Weiss. After a fly out to center fielder Matt Tautges, an error and a fielders choice saw Schmitz stationed at 3rd with 2 outs. Weiss then got the first of his 14 strikeouts to end the threat.
Buckman also got their lead-off batter on base against Schmitz in the bottom of the 1st when Matt Tautges took a walk, stole 2nd, and then advanced to 3rd on an error But like the Steves in their half of the 1st, that lead-off base runner was left on base as Schmitz got an inning-ending ground out to complete a scoreless 1st inning.
Weiss worked a 1-2-3 top of the 2nd with 2 strikeouts while Schmitz allowed a 2-out walk to Joe Kahl in the bottom of the 2nd, with Kahl stealing 2nd, but was stranded on a come-backer to the mound.
In the 3rd, Weiss ran his string to 7 straight batters retired with another 1-2-3 frame including a strikeout. Bo Schmitz walked Matt Tautges with 1 out in the bottom of the 3rd. Once again, Buckman used the running game with Tautges stealing his 2nd base of the game, then advancing to 3rd on a ground ball. But once again, Schmitz kept the game scoreless with a pop-up to 2nd baseman Blake Guggenberger.
In the top of the 4th, the Steves broke through when Tony Schmitz clubbed a lead-off double into the left field corner on the first pitch of the inning. Blake Guggenberger then slapped a single up the middle, moving Schmitz to 3rd with no outs. An Austin Guggenberger 6-4-3 double play ball allowed Schmitz to score, with Weiss then ending the inning with a strikeout and St. Stephen had a 1-0 lead. In the bottom of the 4th, Bo Schmitz issued his 4th walk of the game, putting Noah Boser on base to start the inning, but then got help behind him as Matt Kummet bounced into a nicely turned 3-6-3 double play, with Schmitz then getting a strikeout to keep it 1-0 after 4 innings.
In the top of the 5th, the Steves put together another scoring threat against Weiss. It began with a lead-ff singe from Ben Omann, followed by a sacrifice bunt by Brandon Waldvogel. A wild pitch moved Omann to 3rd and an error allowed Cody Wolhart to reach 1st, giving St. Stephen men at the corners with 1 out. After Wolhart stole 2nd, Weiss got a called 3rd strike out of Bo Schmitz and a ground out to 3rd baseman Aaron Weber to keep it a 1-0 game. Entering the bottom of the 5th, Buckman was still without a base hit against Schmitz, although the 4 walks and 3 stolen bases and had given them several scoring chances. Joe Kahl changed all that when he dropped down a perfect bunt to lead off for the Billygoats first hit off Schmitz. Once again, the Goats were running, with Kahl stealing 2nd. But Schmitz got back-to-back strikeouts and then a pop out to 3rd to end the 5th.
In the top of the 6th, after a Weiss strikeout of Tony Schmitz, Blake Guggenberger singled, Austin Guggenberger got hit by a pitch and after another strikeout, Ben Omann singled to load the bases with 2 outs. Weiss once again got out of trouble with a ground out to 2nd baseman Lane Girtz to leave the bases full.
Lane Girtz led off the bottom of the 6th for the Billygoats with a solid single to center, and he promptly swiped Buckman's 5th base in 5 attempts. Schmitz got Aaron Weber to pop out to shortstop, then Noah Boser flew out to right, and once again, the Steves were just 1 out away from preserving their 1-0 lead. But the continual pressure of getting men on base and stealing them, finally paid off when Matt Kummet ripped a single to center, with Girtz scoring from 2nd and the game was tied 1-1. Schmitz then got a grounder to shortstop to end the inning.
In the top of the 7th, Weiss got back in control, by retiring the Steves in order. Schmitz matched that effort with his own 1-2-3 inning in the bottom of the 7th to send the game to the 8th still tied at 1-1.
In the top of the 8th, Weiss recorded two more strikeouts before Austin Guggenberger collected a 2-out single. But Weiss then fanned Riley Hartwig for his 12th strikeout to end the inning. In the bottom of the 8th, Bo Schmitz walked Matt Tautges for the third time in the game. With that, the Steves decided it was time to make a pitching change, bringing in Blake Guggenberger to take over. Tautges quickly stole his 3rd base of the game, followed by an infield single by Lane Girtz to put men at the corners with no outs. Girtz then stole Buckman's 2nd base of the inning and 7th of the game to make it 2nd and 3rd with no outs. That brought up Aaron Weber, who had doubled twice on Saturday night but was 0-3 with a strikeout and two infield pop ups against the Steves. But on a 2-0 pitch from Guggenberger, Weber ripped a single , and both Tautges and Girtz raced home to put the Billygoats ahead 3-1. Buckman then put Noah Cekalla in as a pinch-runner for Weber at 1st. Noah Boser's sacrifice bunt advanced Cekalla to 2nd with 1 out. Matt Kummet then sliced a single down the left field line, plating Cekalla and Buckman led 4-1. Guggenberger then got a pop out and a strikeout and the 8th inning was over with Buckman ahead 4-1.
In the top of the 9th, Weiss fanned Ben Omann for the first out, then got Brandon Waldvogel to pop up to 1st baseman Joe Kahl, and then finished things off with his 14th strikeout, fanning Cody Wolhart to end the game and guarantee the Billygoats their 3rd straight trip to the Class C State Tournament.
St. Stephen Steves
Blake Andrew Guggenberger