Creston batters were struck out nine times by two different ADM pitchers which helped the Tigers to a 9-1 win Tuesday night at Panther Field. With the win, ADM improves to 15-5 and Creston falls below .500 with a 10-11 record.
“It was one of those deals where you felt you were never in it,” coach Brandon Phipps said.
ADM crept out to a 2-0 lead after the top of the first inning but the Panthers got one across the plate in the bottom half of the first when McCoy Haines came across the plate after Cael Turner doubled.
Four more Tiger runs were added in the top of the second and ADM never looked back.
“It was like we started the game down 6-0,” Phipps said. “There was low energy, but we continued to battle at the plate. We had guys in scoring position. We just couldn’t get momentum.”
Kyle Strider earned the loss after tossing 48 pitches. Strider struck out, allowed six runs, five earned, and walked Seth Walter.
“We made a change pitching wise and Gannon came in and competed his butt off,” Phipps said. “It wasn’t that Kyle didn’t, it’s just defensively they put the ball in play pretty dang good and they were spraying the gaps, driving the baseball.”
Gannon Greenwalt came in for relief duty for the remainder of the game at the top of the third inning.
Greenwalt struck out Nate Fisher, Walter and Gavin Millslagle retired the side with his catch of a fly ball.
In the bottom of the third, Turner led off with his second double of the game. Greenwalt flew out and Turner was originally called safe after seemingly going below the tag of Tiger Grant Rychnovsky and scrambling to third.
“Cael made an impressive play to what we think he avoided the tag,” Phipps said. “Umpires thought differently. We can sit there and argue but end of the day that’s their decision, that’s their call but ultimately we got to be better on the bases. We got to look at ourselves and ask why’d you get yourself in that predicament. Even though it was a nice little dance move by him.”
After the coaches of both teams came out to discuss, the ruling was overturned. Avery Fuller got out shortly thereafter.
Turner, who leads the team with two home runs (both against Carlisle to open the season), is seen as a leader.
Against ADM, Turner had two of the five Panther hits.
“Cael’s great, he’s only a sophomore,” Phipps said. “I look at a lot of these young guys like old guys, but they’re not. Cael’s a great player, he swung that bat really good tonight and hopefully he can carry that confidence over into the next few games.”
Grant Jansen, the winning pitcher for the Tigers, drove in Benjamin Smith and catcher Christian Madison the only two runs of the fourth inning.
ADM scored the final tally of the game in the top of the fifth.
“That’s a good quality team,” Phipps said. “We respect ADM and what they do. We put the ball in play and I thought we did things right defensively but that’s baseball for you. We put our top guy against them and they put their top guy against us, we’re not afraid of anybody.”
In the top of the sixth, Madison had a solid hit deep but Millslagle had another catch. To end the sixth, sophomore left fielder Dylan Calvin lept to catch a ball.
Quinten Fuller and Milo Staver got their first varsity at bats in the bottom of the seventh.
Pictures from the game can be found at tiny.cc/CrestonvsNo7ADM
Agree to disagree
Assistant coach Drew Dornack, who is seen at first base when Creston’s bats are up, was told to go to the dug out after questioning the tag out on Turner.
“I disagreed with the overturning of the play at third and I was having a conversation,” Dornack said. “Unfortunately in that type of situation the head coach is the one who is allowed to talk with the officials. During our conversation I continued to try and make our point. The umpire had every right to send me to the dugout. We pride ourselves on teaching our team to play the game the right way and let the officials do their job. After all it’s a tough job. I felt bad and put our team in a difficult position. Definitely a learning moment and it will not happen again.”
The Panthers travel to Shenandoah tonight with first pitch scheduled for 7:30 p.m., tomorrow the Panthers face another Hawkeye 10 opponent in No. 4 (2A) Clarinda. Creston defeated Shenandoah 5-4 on June 9 and won 9-0 at Clarinda on June 7.
“We got some big ones coming up,” Phipps said. “They’re goint come guns up and we’re going to come guns up we got our hooks ready to go so we’ll be ready to rock.”