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Trojans play Redwood even after four, fall in fifth

The Redwood Valley high school baseball team used an 11-run fifth inning to defeat Worthington in the Trojans' season opener, 12-1

Worthington Trojans head baseball coach Skyler Wenninger talks to the team between innings Monday evening while taking on Redwood Valley.
Worthington Trojans head baseball coach Skyler Wenninger talks to the team between innings Monday evening while taking on Redwood Valley.
Tim Middagh / The Globe

WORTHINGTON -- Outside of that fifth inning, Monday’s season-opening high school baseball game at the Worthington middle school field went fairly well for the Trojans. Starting pitcher Cooper McCoy hurled four solid innings and the Trojans played visiting Redwood Valley even for four frames.

Things got out of hand, however, in the fifth. The final score in the five-inning game was 12-1.

Worthington Trojans relief runner Konner Honius (8) scores a tying run as Redwood Valley catcher Riley Dikken waits for the ball during a Monday evening game.
Worthington's Konner Honius (8) scores a game-tying run as Redwood Valley catcher Riley Dikken waits for the ball Monday in Worthington.
Tim Middagh / The Globe

Not bad, overall, for the first game of the spring.

“Not until that fifth inning,” said Trojans head coach Skyler Wenninger. “The wheels kind of fell off. Too many bad pitches and some hit-by-pitches. Can’t give teams too many outs in baseball games.”

A one-out RBI single off McCoy by Carson Woodford broke the 1-1 tie. McCoy was replaced by Andrew Benson a few batters later, but Benson was wild -- hitting three batters and walking two more. Mathias Noble relieved Benson but hit the first two batters he faced before an infield hit and a two-run single by the Cardinals’ Austin Gunderson ended the damage.

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A single, a walk and an infield error in the top of the first inning led to Redwood Valley’s first run, but McCoy held the visitors scoreless in the next three frames.

“The first inning was just getting back in the groove after I’ve been out for a while,” the right-hander said. “The next three, I think I did pretty good. Then in the fifth I just gave up too many hits.”

Trojans Jake Brandner attempts to steal third as Redwood Valley's Brandon Lang moves in to tag during a Monday evening game in Worthington.
Worthington baseball player Jake Brandner attempts to take third base as Redwood Valley's Brandon Lang moves in for the tag.
Tim Middagh / The Globe

Worthington was held scoreless by Redwood’s Isaac Louwagie until the bottom of the fourth, when WHS pinch runner Konner Honius stole second base with one out, went to third on a passed ball and scored when McCoy grounded out to shortstop.

Louwagie went the distance, checking Worthington on two hits. Redwood Valley finished with eight hits off the three Trojan pitchers.

“Cooper McCoy did a good job of pitching, getting ahead of hitters,” Wenninger said.

But there are other things the Trojans need to shore up.

“We need to have a better approach at the plate, not just one or two of us but all of us. Every one of us can get to work on attacking pitches,” said the coach.

Worthington is scheduled to get back on the field Tuesday (April 12) in a home doubleheader with St. Peter that begins at 4 p.m. weather permitting. Wenninger says he plans to start his “horse,” Jake Brandner in the first game. Brandner’s younger brother Tucker is tentatively penciled in for the second game.

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Results from Tuesday’s doubleheader can be seen online at www.dglobe.com .

Redwood Valley 1 00 0(11) -- 12-8-0

Worthington 000 10 -- 1-2-2

Doug Wolter joined the Worthington Globe in December of 1983 as a sports reporter. He later became sports editor, and then news editor and managing editor. In 2006 he moved to Mankato with his wife, Sandy, and served as an editor at the Mankato Free Press. In 2013 he and Sandy returned to Worthington to take up the job of sports editor at The Globe, and they have been in Worthington since.

Doug can be reached at dwolter@dglobe.com.
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