Indians Stumble Against Grinnell

Noah Van Veldhuizen slides into home against Grinnell on Friday night.

Oskaloosa — Heartbreak for both Osky teams to end the 2020 summer season. After softball had been called off due to potential exposure, the baseball team hosted the Tigers of Grinnell to start 3A sub-state 6 bracket play. Having gone 2-1 against Grinnell on the year, the Indians had confidence that they could move on, but could not get enough runs as they lost 4-3.

It was Own Coffman for the Tigers, who the Indians did not see in the previous three games, against Tyler Miller. The senior walked one in the top of the first and the Tigers eventually loaded the bases. Miller would get out of the bind with a fly out to center but the Indians came out flat from the batter’s box. Colton Butler got aboard on an error but that was it.

Both teams were scoreless in the second but the third produced the first runs of the game for each side. Grinnell got a lead-off walk followed by a steal, with the next batter hitting a single. With nobody out, the runners stole another base each and a walked loaded the bases again. With Miller struggling for control, the call to the “pen” was made as the defense was moved around to allow Noah Van Veldhuizen to come in to pitch.

A walk made it 1-0 Grinnell but Noah did a superb job in holding the score to just that. Two straight Ks and a ground-out ended the top half.

Osky helped the pitchers out by scoring three in the bottom of the third. A leadoff double for Wyatt Krier led to him scoring on a bad throw on the attempted sac-bunt by Miller, who ended up at second. Van Veldhuizen laid down a surprise bunt that put runners at the corners. Grinnell walked Colton Butler and Charlie North brought in another run on a liner to put Osky up 2-1. Colin Snitker scored the final run of the frame on a sac-fly and the Indians moved on to the fourth up 3-1.

Little was mustered by either team in the fourth and fifth, but the Tigers kept coming. With runners at first and third, a steal made it runners at second and third. Coming up to the 60-pitch limit to be available for a potential future match-up, the change was made and Van Veldhuizen came out of the game. Krier came in and a walk juiced the bases. A grounder scored one and on the transfer for the double play, the throw went wild, tying the game at 3. Miller made an absolutely critical and impressive diving catch to keep the game from getting further out of hand but the runner at third tagged and scored. That put Grinnell up by one but that was all they would need.

Coffman would go seven innings, striking out nine batters while only walking one. He gave up three runs on six hits, with only one run being earned in getting the win. Krier took the loss for the Indians, who could not generate anything in their final two chances. Van Veldhuizen gave it a ride on the final at-bat of the year but came a few feet short of the walk-off home run.

Miller gave up one earned run while striking two and walking four in two innings. Van Veldhuizen gave up three runs, struck out five and walked two in three innings. Krier went two, one hit, and three Ks to his name.

“It was frustrating, having six walks, one hit batter, and giving up six walks,” said head coach Bill Almond “Having four errors too….errors always come back to haunt you.”

“It was enjoyable to coach the seniors the past four, five years. I told the young guys that we have some young guys coming up for next year but we have to get at it in the off-season.”

The Indians finish the year at 14-7 overall.

Playoffs – Winterset against Centerville and Norwalk vs Grinnell are the next games in the bracket.

Posted by on Jul 20 2020. Filed under School Activities. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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