Ouch...Braves Take One On The Chin

Friday, May 28, 2021

ORANGE CITY - "We ran into a buzz saw," were the words from Cherokee head coach, Tom Ryherd, followed his team's 16-0 shellacking here Wednesday night.

The game went just four innings as Cherokee pitching gave up 13 walks and hit two batters, while only registering one strikeout.

Another problem for the Braves in the early season has been hitting. Cherokee's only hit came from the bat of Joe Benson as he beat out an infield grounder.

Junior lefthander Levi Pingel started on the mound for the Braves and pitched two strong innings before the wheels came off in the bottom of the third. Pingel gave up just three hits, but walked nine and gave up eight runs that inning. Sophomore Alex Kohn took over in relief and was hammered for eight hits while walking four.

"MOC-FV is a very good baseball team," said Coach Ryherd. "Our guys took one on the chin tonight, but it wasn't due to lack of effort. We continue to compete on every pitch and put our best effort in until the final play," he said.

Senior MOC-FV pitcher Kleyton De Groot struckout five and didn't issue a single walk to the Braves in his one-hitter performance. Austin Oolman, a sophomore, capped the lopsided win in the bottom of the fourth with a walk-off grand slam.

"It didn't go the way we wanted tonight, but it's one game and we can take valuable information from it to put towards improving as a team," said Ryherd. "These guys have it in them to be a good team, they just have to start believing in themselves."

Ryherd added, "The good thing about baseball is that you don't have much time to ponder the tough nights. We have another opportunity to compete and improve the next day."

Cherokee hosted MVAOCOU on Thursday night before hitting the road to Marcus on Tuesday and hosting Estherville-Lincoln Central on Wednesday next week.

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