ALTA - The Alta-Aurelia Warriors baseball team overcame a grand slam home run by Odebolt-Arthur/Battle Creek-Ida Grove's Dayton Hoelscher, scoring five times in the 7th inning to tie their District quarterfinal game at 6-6, before falling to the 19-3 Falcons, 7-6, in nine innings here last week.
The Warriors had previously met the Western Valley Conference representative on June 15 and defeated the Falcons that time, 5-3. But it was not to be on Tuesday night.
Alta-Aurelia Coach Dan Wendel stated, " This was a very well played game by both teams. I was so proud of our effort and how we fought back in this game afer giving up the grand slam.Our kids fought so hard to come back from a 6-1 defict in the top of the 7th only to loose the game in the bottom of the 9th.
"I thought we played very well defensively , and starting hitting better as the game went on. I thought a big turning point came in the first inning, when we had runners on first and second with one out. Ryan Friedrich hit a shot that I thought was to the fence and their left fielder made an unbelievable catch. We ended up getting doubled up on that play instead of scoring two runs and that's how our night would go. We couldn't get that one hit to get over the hump."
Christian Weiland relieved starter Ryan Friedrich after five innings and took the pitching loss for Alta-Aurelia. Friedrich allowed six runs in five innings of work.
The Falcons used Hoelscher's grand slam as the impetus of a six-run fourth inning and led 6-1 when the Warriors struck back in the 7th inning with five runs. A-A's uprising came from two walks and a single by Friedrich to load the bases, followed by a two-run single by Ben Stevens. Another walk loaded the bases again and Chris Bengtson hit a two-run single to make the game 6-5, OA-BCIG. Matt Sefcik then executed a sacrifice bunt to score the tying run, forcing the extra innings.
"OA-BCIG is a very good team and we wish them well down the road," added Wendel. "I am so proud of these kids and what they have accomplished the last two years. Our seniors have meant so much to this program and they will be greatly missed. It was an emotional night but we will be back next season. I know these kids will work hard in the off season and give us a great shot at a successful year again next season."
A-A ends the season with a sparkling 22-4 record.