Hounds win pitchers' duel with Central Lee

Cresswell strikes out two of three in bottom of seventh to secure win

Fort Madison's Hunter Cresswell dives back into first on a pick-off attempt from Central Lee's Chase Johnson in the early going of Monday's game between the Bloodhounds and the Hawks in Fort Madison. The Hounds would get the win 2-1.
Fort Madison's Hunter Cresswell dives back into first on a pick-off attempt from Central Lee's Chase Johnson in the early going of Monday's game between the Bloodhounds and the Hawks in Fort Madison. The Hounds would get the win 2-1.
Photo by Chuck Vandenberg/PCC

FORT MADISON – The Fort Madison Bloodhounds are now 3-0 under 2nd-year Head Coach Albert Schinstock, after a dramatic 2-1 win over Central Lee at home Monday night.
Senior Hunter Cresswell struck out two of the last three Hawk batters to get the win after the Hounds scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the sixth inning off a goofy infield fly.
Tateum Schelich, who had the only Bloodhound hit on the night, popped up to the shortstop with two on and one out in the sixth. The Central Lee shortstop had to fade back a little with runners moving around the bases to make the play, but bobbled the ball allowing Brody Cashman, who was at third, to come in to score. A courtesy runner advanced to third with the runners going on the pitch. Central Lee threw to second and third to try to grab force outs on the play but the runners were allowed to hold at first and third, while Schelich was called out on the infield fly. A strikeout would end the inning and set up a 3-up, 3-down final half for Cresswell.
Central Lee opened the scoring in the first inning when the Hawks’ Blake Davis singled and came around to score on a passed ball and an RBI single by Bo Herdrich.
Fort Madison starter Luke Hellige then settled in getting the next seven Hawk batters over three innings before Davis singled again with two outs in the top of the third.
Central Lee would get no joy from the single as Hellige struck out Herdrich to end the third.
Meanwhile, the Hounds couldn’t get any offense going with four of the first six going down on strikeouts. Cresswell would reach on a fielding error on a single down the first base line that was mishandled by Hawk starter Chase Johnson coming over to cover the bag.
Fort Madison would tie things up in the bottom of the fourth when Schelich’s double to center scored Micheal Fuller courtesy running for Cresswell. Central Lee centerfielder Cory Jones tried a sliding catch to get to Schelich’s dying flyball, but missed allowing the ball to bound away into center.
That was the extent of the offense as Fort Madison managed just that sole hit, aside from a couple errant Hawk plays, while Hellige, Cresswell, Johnson, and Davis kept hitters at bay most of the night.
Davis came on in the bottom of the 5th and quickly fanned three Bloodhounds on just 13 pitches with Fort Madison hitters staring at 8 of 10 strikes in the inning.
Fort Madison Head Coach Albert Schinstock said that’s something he addressed in the post-game with the Hounds.
“We need to get in the cages more. We just talked about that and we need to be more aggressive when umpires have these big strike zones. We just have to be more aggressive there,” Schinstock said.
“The strike zone was very forgiving tonight for both teams so we were able to expand the strike zone a bit. But you pitch to whatever the umpire is calling and I think both teams did a good job of that.”
The Hounds were facing former head coach Ron Walker who’s joined the Central Lee staff this year as a volunteer assistant. Schinstock said that added to the familiarity already in place between the two teams.
“He knows what we’re gonna do and we know what they’re going to do. But a lot of these kids played together in travel ball so we know each other. They started chirping a little early and it got a little intense.”
Cresswell said the strikezone was equal on both sides and didn’t complain about that. But he said coming in as a closer is a little more intense for him.
“It’s nice to get into the flow of the game and come in after I'm warmed up and hyped up. There’s pluses and minuses because starting I can set the tone, but coming in to close is nice because I can bring in the energy.”
Central Lee Coach Shane Weirather said he thinks it was a game the Hawks could’ve won if it were deeper in the season.
“We’ve got a lot of room for improvement. We could have made a couple plays and, as a coaching staff ,we didn’t have a good call on that. But, mostly, I would have liked to see us have more base runners. We just need more base runners.
“I was happy with our pitching. Davis and Johnson are going to be our main guys going forward.”

Fort Madison, baseball, Central Lee, high school, sports, varsity, Hounds, Bloodhounds, Hawks, sports, Pen City Current, Hunter Cresswell, Albert Schinstock, Shane Weirather


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