Errors in crucial situations and a lack of hitting was the story for a young River Valley baseball team Tuesday night , as Woodbury Central beat the Wolverines by a final score of 11-1 in Class 1A District play. Brody Riedemann took the loss on the mound for River Valley while Cole Hancock got the victory for the Wildcats.
"Brody had a tough night fighting his control, allowing 5 Wildcats free passes., " said his coach, Eric Goettsch. "I would rather see them drive one into the gap or hit one out than get a free pass - at least then you know they earned it. Ask any coach and they will tell you that walks are one of the most disturbing things in baseball."
Riedemann allowed 10 runs, five which were earned, in four innings of work . He gave up six hits, issued five walks, and registered two strikeouts. Zak Gander came on to pitch the fifth inning and gave up a run on two hits, with one strikeout. Offensively for the Wolverines, Adam Schirmer was 2 for 2 with a pair of singles, and Brody Riedemann was 1 for 1 with a single and a sacrifice fly, which drove in the lone Wolverine tally. "They hit the ball hard," said Goettsch," and we just made contact. When we did hit the ball hard, it was right at them. It was frustrating because we only had two guys that struck out tonight, but Hancock really throws a lot of off -speed stuff and does a nice job of keeping you off balance."
"The bottom of the third inning really hurt," the coach went on, " when we had scored a run to make it 5-1 and with runners at second and third Skylar Shever just hits a rope, but it was right at the second baseman. If that ball is a couple feet one way or the other the game is 5-3 and we have captured the momentum. That has been our story all year."
Goettsch feels that the top three teams in the Western Valley next year will be Ridge View, Lawton -Bronson, and Woodbury Central, and that after that it's up in the air for that 4th spot. He state that there are quite a few other teams that will be losing lots of kids and they will be in the building mode, while River Valley has already been in that mode. His thought is that the baseball season should be quite exciting for River Valley next year.
Two seniors, Andrew Volkert and Samuel Lundt, finished their high school careers Tuesday night.
"I can't tell you how much those two mean to me and this team," said Coach Goettsch. "These are 4 sport athletes that are also great students academically. Sam was academic all state in football and has a chance in baseball also. Andrew played 3/4 of the basketball season, ran track, and played a full season of baseball with a broken bone in his hand. I wouldn't question the toughness of Andrew Volkert. Sam is going to Northwestern to play basketball and Andrew is going to Northwestern to play football. They did it right and to the best of their ability to say that they will be missed is an understatement."
Lundt has been named to the 2nd team all Western Valley Conference this season, while Volkert and sophomore Blane Cullen both earned honorable mention.