BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
WEST BURLINGTON – Winds kept otherwise hot temperatures at bay in West Burlington, but wreaked havoc on the Holy Trinity Crusaders as they dropped two games in a four-team tourney at Falcon Field.
Louisa-Muscatine got revenge of sorts from an earlier season loss to the Crusaders with a 10-8 win on Saturday, a game that saw many fly balls dropped or miscalculated as wind gusts up to 30 mph blew the rawhide all over the place.
The Crusaders jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead when lead-off hitter Reed Fehseke lined a single to center. A fielder’s choice and sacrifice left Fehseke at third with two outs when sophomore Kyle Bredemeyer laced a double to left field scoring Fehseke. Then Vasin Thurman lined a single to right field scoring Bredemeyer, before a strike out ended the threat.
L-M countered with three runs of their own in the bottom half of one. Senior Cameran Bahl was on the hill for the Crusaders and gave up four straight hits to start the game before settling in to get two fielder’s choice and a strike out to end the first.
The Crusaders went 1-2-3 in the top half of the second, but the Falcons added two more in the bottom the inning for a 5-2 lead going into the third.
Aiden Alfred singled to left in the third but was stranded there when Kyle Bredemeyer popped out to right. Bahl only gave up a walk in the bottom half of the third and got L-M’s Jarod Woerly to fan to end the inning.
The Crusaders couldn’t get anything going in the top half of the fourth, but the Falcons plated five in an inning that saw two HTC errors. Bahl got the Falcons’ Zach Bieri to strike out to end the inning, but the Falcons had a 10-2 lead.
HTC got two back in the top of the 5th when Quentin Schneider singled to right center and Fehseke drew a walk after Schneider had swiped second. Schneider and Fehseke both advanced on a passed ball and then Schneider scored on a wild pitch, then Alfred was called out for batter interference on a throw down to third. L-M made a pitching change and brought in Woerly who got Bahl to fly out to center. Fehseke would eventually score on an error to make it 10-4 before a strike out ended the inning.
HTC head coach pulled Bahl to start the 5th and Jason Thurman to took the mound and got the Falcons to go in order in the bottom of the 5th.
Ben Tinguely walked to start the top of the 6th and stole second and third and scored on a throwing error. Jason Thurman and Zander Schweiss each flew out. Schneider then was struck by a pitch but was caught stealing 2nd to end the 6th.
In the bottom of the 6th, Alfred snared a line drive that almost hit the ground to prevent a big inning for the Falcons. Thurman gave up a single before he struck out the next two batters to end the inning.
HTC made a run of it in the top of the 7th when Fehseke led off with a single and stole second and scored when Bahl bounced one off the fence in right center. After another Falcons’ pitching change and a wild pitch, Bahl stood on third and Alfred hit a sacrifice fly to right to score Bahl. But Kyle Bredemeyer grounded out to second and Vasin Thurman fanned to end the game.
“We started to put the ball in play a little better there in the first game,” Head Coach Albert Schinstock said. “We were hustling a little more so that was good.”
In the second game the Crusaders ran into staffing issues on the mound against Wapello in the 13-1 loss. The Crusaders started on fire with a single by Fehseke and a double by Alfred putting Reed at third in the bottom of the first. On a passed ball, Fehseke was called out stealing home on a contested call that sent Schinstock down to homeplate for a conversation. Bahl and Bredemeyer both struck out to end the inning. Wapello had already plated three in the top half of the inning and put up four more in the second.
The Crusaders didn’t get on the board until the final inning when Garrett Hannum came around to score courtesy running for Connor Holvoet who had taken over pitching duties in the 5th inning from freshman Kadin Medland.
“We’re still very short at pitching and we’re gonna have to throw some young kids Monday and Tuesday. That play at home when Fehseke was called out just took all the wind out of them.”
Holy Trinity is 2-10 on the year and plays an exhibition at Busch Stadium in St. Louis Sunday after the Cardinals game and then is back home Monday against 10-2 Burlington Notre Dame before heading to Van Buren on Tuesday.