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Liberty-Benton whitewashes Wildcats in its season-ender PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, May 22, 2013 12:11 AM


Staff Writer

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KALIDA — Kalida veteran baseball coach Jim McBride was looking to use Tuesday night’s home finale versus Liberty-Benton as a tune-up for tonight’s Elida Division IV District semifinal versus St. John’s, save for using his top two pitchers.

Unfortunately, the Eagles — who have already been eliminated from the tournament — were looking to end their 2013 spring season well by sending out their eight seniors on a winning note and were throwing their ace, Jared Neiling.

The Eagles rode the 4-hit shutout of Neiling (7-1; 5 strikeouts) to an 11-0 5-inning triumph.


“That’s what you get when they throw their ace and we keep ours out. One might say it’s what you expect but I am never happy with a loss, especially at home,” McBride explained. “I was disappointed with our effort tonight. We’re a young team overall, playing a lot of freshmen and sophomores, but 21 games into the season, that’s no excuse anymore. We’re a District-level team that didn’t show it tonight and I don’t like how we don’t play well consistently; at times, we show signs but at others, we don’t.”


Eagle coach Jim Rucki was pleased with his team’s approach.

“We had to wait a week to play this game after we got knocked out of the tournament and you never know how your guys will react,” he added. “We struggled to have good practices this week but we came out ready to go. I was pleased with that; the kids wanted to go out well and we did.”

LB left a runner on in the first.

Kalida got a leadoff single by freshman Brent Hovest (2-for-3) but he was caught stealing with one out.

The visitors (22-4) broke through in the top of the second inning against junior starter Randy Zeller (0-3) on a hit (Alex Harter; 2-for-4), a hit batter (Andrew Kotey), a forceout at second by Brandon Samuels and a ground ball by Kenny Phi, scoring Harter for a 1-0 lead. The Eagles left the bases full.

Freshman Trent Gerding lined a 2-out single in the bottom half.

Kalida turned a double play in the Eagle third.

In the home half, Kyle Vorst got aboard on a 1-out error and Hovest singled sharply up the gut. Freshman Austin Swift grounded out to advance both runners but to no avail.

Liberty broke it open with a 6-run fourth on a leadoff 3-base error on a fly ball hit by Kotey and then added five hits and a hit batter. The big blow was a bases-clearing double to the gap in right center by Austin Ingleston (2-for-4, 3 runs batted in) that chased Zeller (for Colton Farrell) and made the score 6-0. A run-scoring single by Harter — the ninth batter of the frame — that greeted the sophomore right-hander accounted for the 7-0 score.

Senior Robb Kleman got aboard on a 1-out strikeout in the dirt in the Kalida fourth.

Benton finished it with a 4-run fifth on five hits — including a run-scoring double by Jordan Harpst and RBI knocks by Kenny Phi and pinch-hitter Anthony Webb — plus a sacrifice fly by Neiling that made it 11-0.

Senior Kyle Vorst singled to right center in the Kalida fifth but got no farther.



Jordan Harpst 2b 3-2-1-1, Jared Neiling p 3-1-1-2, Austin Ingleston ss 4-1-2-3, Mitch Young c 4-0-1-0, Kalen Rice pr 0-0-0-0, Alex Harter 3b 4-1-2-1, Andrew Kotey 1b 2-1-0-0, Brandon Samuels rf 3-1-2-1, Kenny Phi lf 3-1-2-1, Vince Riggi pr 0-1-0-0, Josh Ostrander cf 2-1-1-0, Anthony Webb ph 1-1-1-1. Totals 29-11-13-10.



Brent Hovest 3b 3-0-2-0, Austin Swift cf 3-0-0-0, Neil Recker c 2-0-0-0, Kyle Kehres 2b 1-0-0-0, Colton Farrell p 1-0-0-0, Rob Kleman 1b 2-0-0-0, Trent Gerding ss 2-0-1-0, Randy Zeller p/2b 2-0-0-0, Austin Horstman rf 2-0-0-0, Kyle Vorst lf 2-0-1-0. Totals 20-0-4-0.

Score by Innings:

Lib.-Ben. 0 1 0 6 4 - 11

Kalida 0 0 0 0 0 - 0

E: Ingleston, Swift, Gerding; DP: Kalida 1; LOB: Liberty-Benton 6, Kalida 5; 2B: Harpst, Ingleston, Samuels; CS: Hovest (by Young); SF: Neiling.



Neiling (W, 7-1) 5.0 4 0 0 0 5


Zeller (L, 0-3) 3.1 7 7 5 1 1

Farrell 1.2 6 4 4 0 0

WP: Neiling, Zeller, Farrell; HBP: Harpst (by Zeller), Kotey (by Zeller).

Last Updated on Wednesday, May 22, 2013 12:13 AM

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