The weather may have delayed the start of Wadena-Deer Creek's baseball season, but the team was ready to go Friday, April 16, when it hosted Parkers Prairie. Strong pitching and productive offense led the Wolverines to a 9-0 shutout against the Panthers.

The Wolverines jumped out to an early lead, scoring their first run since 2019 in the first inning. The team followed that up with three runs in both the second and third innings. The fourth inning was scoreless, but the Wolverines added two more runs in the fifth inning to make the final 9-0.

Offensively, several players contributed to WDC's victory. Zach Shaw went 3-5 with two RBI and three runs. Tony Kreklau went 2-2 at the plate, scoring one run himself and getting three RBI. Additionally, Brayden Kleinke went 2-4 with one RBI and two runs.

The Wolverines also spread their pitching around, with Payton Rondestvedt pitching three innings and Kreklau and Josh Dykhoff each pitching two innings. Rondestvedt was the winning pitcher in the game. Of his 50 pitches, 33 were strikes and he had six strikeouts in the game.

Head coach Kyle Dykhoff was happy with the win but said the team still has a long way to go. "It was nice to start the season with a strong performance to settle the nerves," he said. "We will build from here on out. Both offensively and defensively we were solid, especially for the first game of the season. With only one game this week I felt it was important to get multiple pitchers the opportunity to throw and get live game innings."

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While he was happy with his team's performance, he was perhaps even happier just to be back on the field. "It was great to be back," he said. "There were a lot of smiles and laughs in the dugout that were long overdue."

The Wolverines start the season with a 1-0 record.

Panthers 0, Wolverines 9

R H E

PP 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 - 0 5 2

WDC 1 3 3 0 2 0 x - 9 14 1

WP-Payton Rondestvedt (WDC)

LP-Wyatt Murray (PP)

WDC-Zach Shaw 3-5, 3R, 2RBI; Tony Kreklau 2-2, R, 3RBI; Josh Dykhoff 1-3, R; Payton Rondestvedt 1-3, RBI; Evan Lunde 2-2, RBI; Carson Kern 1-4, R; Braeden Redfield 1-3; Brayden Kleinke 2-4, 2R, RBI; Isaac Hamann 1-2, R

Pitching-WDC-Rondestvedt 3IP, 2H, 2BB, 6K; Kreklau 2IP, 2H, 2K; Dykhoff 2IP, 1H, 1BB, 4K