Baseball: Post 54 wins easily against WoodburyWith a heat advisory in effect for Red Wing, it was a good thing Post 54 didn’t need to expend much energy Monday night at the Red Wing Athletic Field.
By: Chris Harrell, The Republican Eagle
With a heat advisory in effect for Red Wing, it was a good thing Post 54 didn’t need to expend much energy Monday night at the Red Wing Athletic Field.
Joel Newman threw five shutout innings while Red Wing’s offense jumped ahead 7-0 by the fourth inning and breezed to a 7-3 victory against Woodbury.
“It does (look easy) at times,” Post 54 head coach Justin Plein said. “They know when to turn it on and when to have fun.”
Red Wing (7-1) had reason to enjoy Monday’s game, scoring two runs in each of the first two innings and getting a couple dazzling plays from Preston Blaney to secure the victory. Blaney took away two possible hits in center field and connected on a deep home run over the left field fence to put Post 54 up 6-0 in the fifth inning. He finished 1-for-1 with two walks, two runs scored and a stolen base.
“He definitely didn’t miss on that one,” Plein said. “That was out of here in a hurry.”
Newman was also stellar for Red Wing, slicing through Woodbury’s offense with some help from Blaney and the rest of the Post 54 defense. He allowed four hits and struck out three without walking a batter.
“I threw a lot of fastballs actually,” Newman said. “They hit the ball pretty well but our defense made some great plays.”
Red Wing defeated Woodbury Friday, with Trey Eckstrom delivering a solid start, and Newman said he tried to use Eckstrom’s performance as a template.
“I was trying to do what (Eckstrom) did on Friday and let the defense make the plays,” he said.
In the first inning, Newman got into some trouble after retiring the first two batters of the inning. He gave up back-to-back singles to put runners on first and third but a fly out to Blaney ended the inning.
“It’s effortless for him,” Plein said of Newman. “Every pitch he’s learning how to face (the hitters). He has all three pitches and he knows when to set them up.”
Post 54 received plenty of help from Woodbury early on, tallying two runs without an RBI in the first inning. Newman scored on an error by the catcher and Mike Stegora put Red Wing up 2-0 on a wild pitch. Post 54 notched another two runs in the second inning, with Andrew Sandstrom scoring on another wild pitch and the second run coming on a single by Karsten Lampman to plate Blaney.
Red Wing stranded the bases loaded in the third inning but Zach Garner tripled off the right field fence to lead off the fourth inning and came around to score on a sacrifice fly to center field by Newman. David Goggin followed with a triple but was stranded at third. Garner finished 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored while Goggin went 3-for-4.
Blaney’s solo home run started the scoring in the fifth inning and Garner singled home Eckstrom to push the lead to 7-0.
Woodbury cut the score to 7-2 with two runs in the sixth inning and had the bases loaded with one out but two straight fly outs to Blaney ended the threat. Post 54 allowed another run in the seventh on a balk but Marcus Leach struck out the final batter to seal the victory.
Plein said Red Wing continues to dominate early in games but Post 54 needs to keep applying pressure to teams and not become satisfied with a small lead.
“We jump out early and coast,” Plein said. “We don’t have to do that. We can score more than four or five runs. … Stay focused in and play it as a one-run game.”