Drew Verstegen (Fr., Mason City, IA) hit a game winning single between second and third base in game two to score Hunter King (Fr., Mason City, IA) to cap off a three-run rally in the seventh inning and move the Trojans to 30-9 overall and 10-2 in the Iowa Community College Athletic Conference.
In the bottom of the seventh, NIACC had five singles as well as one walk. NIACC came into the inning down 3-1, and had left 10 runners on base in the game.
As far as pitching, Joey Reed (Fr., Lindstrom, MN) won game one and Tim Black (Fr., Mount Hope, Ontario) won game two. Black (4-0) held the first five batters of Ellsworth’s lineup hitless (0-for-17), but still left the game down 3-1. Reed (5-3) struck out four in game one, and Ean McNeal (Fr., Cedar Rapids, IA) came in for the save (3).
The Trojans started the rally with a Tyler Peterson (So., Eden Prairie, MN) single off of Ellsworth pitcher Trevor Ryba. Ryba to that point had been pitching well by striking out eight and keeping the Trojans to only one run in the sixth, but Ellsworth (19-20, 5-11 in ICCAC) decided to take Ryba out after the single and put in Dane Mehring for the save opportunity.
Mehring struggled and eventually get the loss. Nick Tillo (So., Sioux City, IA) welcomed him to the game by getting his third single of the game, and King would follow up with a single as well. Jose Perez (Fr., Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico) got his second RBI of the game by singling to score Peterson to make it 3-2.
Nate Olin (So., Galesburg, IL) drew a walk during the next at bat to tie the game, and after a flyout by a pinch-hitting Ryan Voves (Fr., Mason City, IA), Verstegan hit the walk-off single and was greeted by Trojan bench after reaching first base.
It was a good comeback for the Trojans as Ellsworth led almost all of game two.
While the top of Ellsworth’s order struggled, the bottom four batters were 6-for-11 with three RBI. The Panthers scored one in the second off a hit by the ninth hitter Jean Peralta, and two in the fourth when centerfielder Patrick Riewer (sixth hitter) hit a solo homerun and catcher JJ Reimer (seventh hitter) scored off centerfielder Andrew Coffman’s (eighth hitter) single.
NIACC had 12 hits in game two. Outside of Tillo’s three hits, Peterson, King and Perez all had two hits in game two. Perez had two RBI and brought in Tillo in the fifth to make it 3-1 at that point.
NIACC won game one despite only having five hits and trailing through most of the game. NIACC’s only multi-hit inning of the game gave NIACC the lead. King singled in the fifth to score Peterson, and Olin followed up with a single two batters later to score Tillo to give the Trojans the lead.
Ellsworth took the lead early in the first on a hit by Josue Santiago, and added another run in the second when Patrick Riewer scored from second on a single by JJ Reimer. NIACC tied the game in the third on a Tillo double that brought in Verstegen and Sala.
Ellsworth retook the lead in the fourth off Melvin Rodriguez’s fifth homerun of the season. Rodriguez’s solo shot curled over the left field fence, which was the area of the field where most deep hits were due to the strong southern wind.
The wheels then fell off for the Panthers, as they lost out on opportunities to add damage. Ellsworth would have runners on the corners with one out twice in the fourth and sixth and wouldn’t score on either opportunity.
NIACC will travel to Dakota County Technical College (MN) on Wednesday for a doubleheader in Burnsville before travelling to Southeastern in West Burlington for a conference series next weekend.
ECC 110 100 0 – 3 9 1
NIACC 002 020 x – 4 6 2
Miguel Ortiz (2 K, 5 BB, 1 HBP), Paul Kraemer (5) and JJ Reimer.
2B – Patrick Riewer
HR – Melvin Rodriguez, Reimer
Multiple hits – Josue Santiago 2, Reimer 2, Coffman 2
Joey Reed (3 K), Ean McNeal (7) (1 HBP) and Robert Swenson.
2B – Jose Perez, Nick Tillo
Multiple RBI – Tillo 2
ECC 010 200 0 – 3 6 0
NIACC 000 010 3 – 4 11 0
Trevor Ryba (8 K, 3 BB, 1 HBP), Dane Mehring (7) (1 BB) and Reimer.
2B – Reimer
HR – Riewer
Multiple hits – Reimer 2
Tim Black (4 K, 3 BB), Kyle Moses (7) and Osvaldo Marin.
Multiple hits – Tillo 3, King 2, Peterson 2, Perez 2
Multiple RBI – Perez 2