By JIM METCALFE
DELPHOS - Both of the ACME summer baseball tournament games held on a warm Sunday afternoon at Wildcat Field in Delphos turned out the exact same way - 12-2 scores that ended after 5 2/3 innings.
The first was Lincolnview (home on the scoreboard due to the coin flip) besting the Wildcats and then the Wildcats doing the same to Van Wert in the elimination game.
In game 1, the Wildcats tried to score in the top of the first as Zach Ricker walked with one down against Lancer complete-game righty Kyle Williams (6 innings, 5 hits, 2 earned run, 4 walks, 8 strikeouts; 118 pitches, 70 strikes). Austin Jettinghoff bounced out to move him up and Zach Kimmett got a tough-hop single to third to put runners on the corners. However, Williams retired the next man for the third out.
Williams led off the Lancer first with a tough-hop single past shortstop Jettinghoff. Nick Kayser singled to left. An error on Nick Leeth's grounder left everyone safe. Tyler Lovett's bouncer resulted in another misplay, scoring Williams. Tyler Richey forced Kayser at home but Austin Leeth was plunked by Wildcat starter Ross Thompson (22/3 IPs, 5 hits, 7 runs, 4 earned, 2 BBs) to force home N. Leeth for a 2-0 lead. However, the next two were retired.
Lincolnview made it 4-0 in the second with a 2-out rally. Dalton Schmersal and N. Leeth walked and both scored courtesy of a double to left by Lovett.
The Wildcats got a single run in the third. Gaige Rassman walked to lead off and stole second an out later, scoring on a 2-out single to right by Jettinghoff. He stole second and moved to third on a wild pitch but was left stranded.
The "hosts" made it 7-1 in the home half, again with two down. Derek Friesner singled to left and Eli Farmer was hit by a pitch. Both advanced on a wild pitch. Williams aided his cause with a 2-run ground single down the left-field line. A pair of passed balls put him at third. Schmersal walked to finish Thompson and bring Jordan Herron (3-plus IPs, 5 hits 5 earned runs, 6 BBs, 2 Ks). A misplayed gerounder hut by N. Leeth plated Williams for the seventh run. Lovett was plunked (aided by another error) but Richey forced Lovett at second to end the uprising.
The "visitors" made it 7-2 in the fourth. Thompson got aboard via a 2-base throwing error, moved to third on a bounceout by Seth Wollenhaupt and scored on a 2-out double to center by Herron to make it 7-2.
A. Leeth led off the Lancer half with a liner into center but was erased on a grounder by Troy Patterson. Friesner bunted him to second and Farmer blooped a hit to shallow center but they remained on base, two of 12 base-runners stranded.
The Red and White tried to get closer in the fifth. Ricker walked to lead it off and Jettinghoff singled to left. A 1-out comebacker by Thompson advanced both runners but both were stranded.
Lincolnview got a 2-out walk by Lovett in the fifth.
In the Jeffcat sixth, Zavier Buzard beat out an infueld single to short and stole second. He took third on a fly ball to center by Herron but was doubled off when Rassman lined out hard to first sacker Friesner, who threw over to record the twin-killing.
The Lancers ended it in the home half. A. Leeth walked and stole second. Back-to-back walks to Patterson and Friesner loaded the bases. With one out, Williams walked to force home Leeth and Schmersal singled to center to score pinch-runner Troy Neate. An out later, Lovett's knock to center scored pinch-runner Cole Schmersal and a 10-2 edge. Richey blooped one to right to get home pinch-runner Wyatt Schmersal and with A. Leeth up to bat, a wild pitch plated D. Schmersal to end the contest.
In the nightcap, it started out more of a pitchers' duel. Van Wert, which lost to Crestview 1-0 at Stadium Park and the visitors, got a 2-out walk by Brandt Henry against Wildcat complete-game starter Andrew Kortokrax (6 IPs, 2 hits, 2 unearned runs, 3 BBs, 9 Ks; 93 pitches, 59 strikes). He was left there.
Jefferson went up 1-0 in the home half against Cougar starter Mason Krugh (4 1/3 IPs, 5 hits, 4 earned runs, 2 BBs, 6 Ks). Tyler Wrasman commenced with a solid single up the gut, stole second, took third on a sacrifice by Ricker and scored on a knock to left center by Jettinghoff. He stood at second after an errant pickoff try but remained there.
The Cougars got a leadoff error off the bat of Ryan Stoller and a stolen base in the second. Two outs later, Jacob Hoverman walked. However, Kortokrax ended up fanning the side.
Kortokrax singled to left to start the home half and stole second. He tried to move up on a pitch in the dirt but Stoller gunned him down at third.
The Cougars took a 2-1 lead in the third. Tyler Williams got aboard via an error and advanced on a wild pitch. Krugh walked and Henry bunted his way aboard. Two outs hence, Cody Keirns got aboard on a misplayed fly ball, scoring both runners and putting Henry at third. He tried to steal home on the throw back to the pitcher with an 0-2 count on Tanner Norman but an alert Kortokrax nailed him.
After a 1-2-3 Jefferson third, lightning was sighted and forced an hour, 40-minute delay.
Kortokrax came back even better. He gave up a 2-out infield hit to Thad Carter but he was erased on a ground ball by Tyler Williams.
That started a string of seven straight outs to end his pitching.
Krugh registered a 1-2-3 fourth.
The fifth was his downfall. He walked Seth Wollenhaupt and Buzard singled up the gut. Nick Fitch bunted them both up and both scored as Wrasman doubled to right center for a 3-2 lead. That finished Krugh's day, replaced by Nathan Stoller. Back-to-back free passes to Ricker and Jettinghoff loaded the bases. Kimmett lofted a fly ball to center that was deep enough to get Wrasman home for a 4-2 edge. Ricker stole third and Jettignhoff followed by swiping second. Thompson walked, finishing Stoller for the southpaw Henry. He walked Kortokrax to plate Ricker. Wollenhaupt beat out an infield single wide of first to score Jettinghoff and keep the sacks juiced. Buzard worked a free pass that plated Thompson for a 7-2 spread but the bases remained juiced.
The Wildcats finished it in their half of the sixth. Wrasman walked and an error on a ball hit by pinch-hitter Herron left both runners safe. Wrasman and pinch-runner Gage Townsend stole the next base and scored as Jettinghoff bounced a single into center. Kimmett walked, ending Henry's mound stint for Williams.Thompson's rap to right plated Jettinghoff and a 10-2 margin, putting pinch-runner Ryan Bullinger at third. Thompson burgled second and Kortokrax walked. An out hence, Buzard grounded out to first to plate Bullinger and move the other two up a base. Thompson scored on a 2-2 wild pitch (with Fitch up) to end the game.
The Wildcats (9-7) play Lincolnview 6 p.m. tonight at Wildcat Field in another elimination game. The game had been scheduled for Lincolnview but damage to that field done by Friday's storm forced the change.