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Rondestvedt, defense stifle New York Mills

Wadena-Deer Creek's Payton Rondesvedt

A quick glance at the Wadena-Deer Creek baseball roster shows fans that Payton Rondestvedt is an eighth grader. What the New York Mills Eagles faced appeared to be a crafty veteran.

Rondestvedt pitched well beyond his years when he pitched a complete-game two-hitter in a 5-1 victory over the New York Mills Eagles at Russ Jacobson Field in New York Mills on May 8.

“He is cool, calm and collected,” Wadena-Deer Creek head coach Kyle Dykhoff said. “I have had Payton now for the last three years in junior babe ruth and it’s fun to watch. He is real even keel and throws a lot of strikes. I told him to throw strikes and let this defense work behind you, because we have a great defense behind him. He came in and threw strikes and was effective. He gave our team a great opportunity to win a ball game.”

Rondestvedt allowed two hits, both coming in the third inning which led to the lone New York Mills run. He struck out seven batters, two in the final inning. He walked one.

Isaac Witthuhn steals second, leading to another run for Wadena-DC.

Helping Rondestvedt on the mound was a solid defense that did not have any errors. Rondestvedt induced five pop outs and nine ground outs.

“We made the plays when we needed to and that’s what we expect out of our defense,” Dykhoff said. “This is a senior led group and a solid defense. It was just let him work and throw strikes.”

The Wolverines jumped ahead with runs in the first three innings, helping Rondestvedt settle in on the hill.

Preston Warren led off with a double and scored on a sacrifice fly from Jake Dykhoff in the first. The Wolverines added another run in the second when Isaac Witthuhn led off with a single and eventually scored when Rondestvedt reached on an error. They added another in the third when Noah Ross reached on an error and scored on an RBI double by Dykhoff, making it 3-0 in the third.

Jake Dykhoff hits a laser to left field driving in a run for the Wolverines.

The Eagles got a run back on an RBI single by Caden Roberts, but that would be the only damage the Eagles would get against the eighth-grade pitcher. He allowed only three baserunners in the win.

The Wolverines tacked on two more runs in the seventh. Witthun and Colby Schertler both singled and eventually scored in the inning when Max Phillips hit a ground ball and the throw to first was errant, allowing the second run to score.

Charlie Fox took the loss for the Eagles. He pitched well but did not get much help defensively. The Eagles committed four errors behind him. He allowed five runs on six hits and struck out two.

The Wolverines improved to 8-1 overall with the win and 7-0 in the Park Region Conference. They continue a very busy week with a tilt at Siebert Field on May 9 at 6 p.m. against Ottertail Central, before playing a pair of games on Thursday and another one on Friday.

“It was a big win. We got a lot of baseball to play this week with five games. It’s nice to get off to a good start and get a good performance out of the gate,” Kyle Dykhoff said.

WDC 1 1 1  0 0 0 2--5 6 0

NYM 0 0 1  0 0 0 0--1 2 4

WP: Payton Rondesvedt

LP: Charlie Fox

Jason Groth

 Groth is a Minnesota Newspaper Association award-winning Sports Editor of the Perham Focus and the Wadena Pioneer Journal. Groth worked in Grand Rapids as the Sports Director at KOZY/KMFY radio for two years and prior to that he was the Sports Editor/Writer for the Grand Rapids Herald-Review for seven years. 

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