Baseball team loses to Austin in back and forth battle

Gabe Sawyer prepares to frame a strike. Photo credit Jim Wellbrock

By Joey Hudson

       Despite a hot start to the game the Raiders fell 9-7 against Austin in Northfield on Tuesday. Senior Spencer Mellgren started on the mound for the Raiders going four innings with five earned runs on six hits with four strikeouts. The Raiders bats were led by seniors Charlie Monaghan and Oliver Hollerung, collecting two hits each.

       The scoring started off in the first with a two RBI line drive single from senior left fielder Tyler Hughes. The Raiders took their 3-0 lead into the fourth where the Austin backs struck back scoring four runs in the top of the fourth off the backs of three hits and a double from Austin right fielder Issac Stromlund. It didn’t take long for the Raiders to strike back though, scoring two runs in the bottom of the inning to retake the lead off scoring two runs retaking the lead with a 5-4 score. 

       For the top of the fifth Spencer Mellgren was relieved by his younger brother Junior Tegan Mellgren who went an inning and a third allowing two earned runs off three hits. The first of the two runs came in the top of the fifth when Austin catcher Dakota Retterath knocked in one runner on a double. In the bottom of the fifth, senior third baseman Nolan Thompson came up to the plate and launched a pitch around 370 feet under the scoreboard in left center. Tegan Mellgren came back out for the top of the sixth where he only got one out before allowing an RBI single to Austin first baseman Nick Robertson. 

       With one out in the top of the sixth senior Isaiah Stiner came into relief with one out and a runner on second. An error allowed a run to score for Austin to score and take a 7-6 lead before Stiner was able to get out of the inning. In the bottom of the sixth the Raiders got runners on second and third with no one out when Tyler Hughes came up and hit a ball back up the middle, Austin had to settle with a throw onto first allowing Charlie Monaghan to score. The Raiders weren’t able to capitalize after the Hughes RBI and the game entered the seventh tied at seven apiece. 

       Stiner came back out for the seventh where the Austin bats were jumping right at the start with a lead off double from Austin’s left fielder Brayden Bishop. A walk, hit by pitch, and another double later and Austin had a 9-7 lead entering the bottom of the seventh. Thompson led off the bottom of the seventh coming off of his solo shot in the fifth but wasn’t able to reach base. Senior Gabe Sawyer was able to reach via a walk after, but the Raiders were unable to get any other runners on or score any runs. 

       There were seven lead changes in the game, with Tyler Hughes having the most RBIs out of any player on both teams. The Raiders left nine runners on base over the course of the game, along with committing four errors. The Raiders scored four bases on the game, with rising star Kam Kaiser stealing three of them. The winning pitcher for Austin was Sam Oelfke, with Isaiah Stiner taking the loss on the game. With the loss the Raiders moved to 2-2 in conference play and 3-3 overall on the season.