Wolverines bump Melrose to reach sub-section finals
Jake Krause came up big at the plate Wednesday as the Wadena-Deer Creek Wolverines put themselves in position for a West Sub-Section 6AA title by downing Melrose 6-4 at Joe Faber Field in St. Cloud.
Krause drove in four runs with two hits to help the Wolverines eliminate the Dutchmen and earn a shot at Long Prairie-Grey Eagle Thursday night in St. Cloud. Wednesday's victory also qualified the Wolverines for a spot in the Section 6AA tournament June 4, 5 and 7 at Dick Putz Field in St. Cloud. The West and East Sub-Section 6A champions and the runners-up all qualify for the section. Albany and St. Cloud Cathedral were meeting Thursday to decide the East sub-section winner.
WDC Head Coach Kyle Dykhoff saw his Wolverines commit three fielding miscues in the Melrose game, and it did not sit well with him.
"If we want to come back with a sub-section title, we need to eliminate errors and mental mistakes," Dykhoff said.
The Wolverines jumped on the Dutchmen right away Wednesday by scoring four runs in the first inning and two more in the second.
Ryan Redfield tacked up his second victory in two days, as he threw a complete game for the Wolverines. Redfield notched a victory in Tuesday's tournament opener with Otter Tail Central, when he tossed two innings of shutout relief.
Redfield allowed a solo run in the second and then weathered a rocky fifth inning, during which the Dutchmen scored three times. The WDC righty walked four, but fanned six, and allowed just four hits.
Redfield also had a good day at the plate, going 3-for-4 and scoring twice. Coming up with one hit and one RBI were Mackinley Wright and Matt Laughlin.
Austin Van Beck drove in two runs for Melrose.
The Dutchmen reached the sub-section semifinals by stunning Staples-Motley 3-1 Tuesday.
Wednesday's win gave the Wolverines a 14-7 record.
Melrose 010 030 0 - 4 4 1
WDC 420 000 x - 6 9 3
Ryan Redfield and Jake Rude; Austin Van Beck, Ty Reller (2) and Trevor Sawyer
WP- Redfield; LP- Van Beck
WDC 3, OTC 2
The Wolverines scored once in the seventh and once in the eighth Tuesday in ousting the sixth-seeded Bulldogs from the Section 6AA playoffs.
David Najjar and Ryan Redfield both collected two hits. Kenny Sakry reached base three times, and had an RBI triple. Matt Laughlin also reached three times.
The Bulldogs grabbed a 2-1 lead in the top of the seventh, as Joe Tigges scored from third on a suicide squeeze by Vinnie Otake.
The Wolverines tied the game 2-2 in the bottom of the seventh when the OTC shortstop misplayed a dribbler off the bat of Jonathan Goeden, which allowed Jake Rude to score from second. Rude was able to reach base when his swinging third strike eluded the OTC catcher. Rude advanced to second on a fielder's choice.
Redfield relieved Sakry in the seventh and gave the Wolverines two innings of no-hit ball. Redfield fanned four while walking two.
Najjar came up with a one-out single in the eighth. With the hit and run on, Redfield poked a single into right center and Najjar scored when the OTC rightfielder misplayed the ball.
"We were down to our last out, and found a way to win," WDC Head Coach Kyle Dykhoff said. "It was not pretty, but the boys kept fighting and did a good job of picking each other up."
Collin Teich went 2-for-4 in the loss.
The Wolverines improved to 13-7, while the Bulldogs closed out the season with an 11-9 record.
OTC 001 000 10 - 2 5 3
WDC 000 010 11 - 3 8 4
Vinny Otake, Zach Torgerson (1) and Aaron Butler; Kenny Sakry, Ryan Redfield (7) and Jake Rude
WP- Redfield; LP- Torgerson