A season opener between two tough Little Hawkeye Conference squads ended with a walk-off wild pitch in the seventh.
The Pella Dutch claimed the victory over the Grinnell Tigers at home Monday night, 3-2.
Grinnell first crossed home in the top of the second to hold a 1-0 lead until the bottom of the fourth, when River Baker hit a two-run single. The Tigers tied the Dutch in the top of the seventh, before the Dutch were able to seal the victory.
Baker went 2-for-2 with the RBI, Nick Grandia, Jason Knox and Aidan Pollock each added hits.
“Tanner Dunsbergen started on the mound and gave us three solid innings,” Head Coach Jesse Jablonski said. “His offspeed wasn’t super sharp, but he was still able to allow only the single run. Mason Wittmer gave us three great innings in the middle of the game with no runs allowed and six strikeouts. Our pitchers really threw well only walking three batters, and our defense made the plays behind them.”
That defense and the pitchers forced Grinnell to strand 11 runners in the game.
“They had opportunities to widen their early lead, but our pitchers made some huge pitches in key spots to get out of jams,” Jablonski added. “For the first game of the season, I thought we played very well and we got a number of guys into the game and they all came through in key situations.”
Drew Hillman was the winning pitcher for the Dutch. They travel to Indianola tonight (June 16) in another key LHC matchup. Indianola defeated Newton 4-1 Monday night.