ANTWERP – On a chilly, windy afternoon from Antwerp High School, both the Tinora Rams and the Antwerp Archers had their sights on sole possession of first place in the Green Meadows Conference.
Tinora was looking to stay unbeaten as they brought their 11-0 record to face the Archers, who entered at 7-1. Both teams were 4-0 in conference play.
The Archers were sending senior lefty Luke Krouse to the hill, while the Rams sent senior righty Casen Wolfrum to the mound. Wolfrum 3-0 on the season, had not allowed an earned run all season, 19 innings of work.
In an omen of things to come for the Rams over the next 2 hrs and 30 minutes, the Archers scored two unearned runs off Wolfrum in the first to grab a 2-0 lead after one inning.
Tinora mounted a two out rally in the top of the second. After a Tristan Birks walk, Bryce Bailey followed with a deep drive to right field. The ball hopped the wall, resulting in a ground rule double. With Birks now on third and Bailey at second, Rams left fielder Grady Gustwiller worked a two out walk to load the bases of Krouse and the Archer.
Tinora’s Keegan Miles stepped up and roped a single to left field. Archers left fielder Reid Lichty threw a dart to the plate, cutting down Bryce Bailey. Birks scored to cut the Archer lead to 2-1.
Tinora would score three runs in the top third of the Archer starter Krouse. Casen Wolfrum had a key two RBI single to give the Rams a 4-2 lead after the Rams half inning.
Krosue would exit after just three innings, Parker Moore would be next in line.
Antwerp would score three more runs in the third, exiting Tinora’s starter Casen Wolfrum after two and one third innings, Eli Plassman would come in for the Rams.
Archers Luke Krouse sent a Wolfrum pitch deep over the center field wall for a two run homerun, tying the game at 4-4.
An Ethan Lichty RBI single would give the Archers a 5-4 lead after three innings. The Rams defense committed a huge error in the three run Archers inning.
Tinora would tie the game at 5-5 in the fourth with a Cole Commisso single, scoring Nolan Schafer.
More Rams errors would allow Antwerp to increase their lead to 7-5 after four innings. A very seldom called fielders interference on top of a fielding error allowed a Archer run to score, followed by a Krouse RBI single would end the inning with the Archers leading by two.
Carson Altimus would send a Eli Plassman pitch to deep right for a solo homerun, increasing the Archer lead to 8-5. Another Rams error would allow the Archers ninth run to score, leading 9-5 after five innings.
Tinora would claw back in the game in the top of the sixth. Nolan Schafer would send a Parker Moore pitch deep over the center field fence, scoring Teron Ward, cutting the Antwerp lead to 9-7. Cole Commisso would walk, scoring on a Jayden Bergman RBI double, slicing the Archers lead to 9-8.
Ethan Lichty would enter, becoming the Archers third pitcher on the night. Bergman would remain stranded at third as the Rams could not get a key hit.
Lichty would mow down the Rams in the seventh, striking out two batters, ending the Rams eleven game winning streak.
Tinora falls to 11-1, 4-1 in the GMC. Tinora will travel to Paulding Thursday to face the Panthers.
Antwerp jumps back in the fire, traveling to Wayne Trace Thursday to take on the 12-1, 5-0 Raiders in a showdown for first place in the GMC.
Pic – Slapshot Sarah Harris