Lynx avoid bad loss with 7th-inning rally vs. Cubs
NEVADA — Nevada looked at the on-deck circle and saw a freshman who was 0 for 4 with a pair of strikeouts. Its choice was easy.
Devon Stoakes knew it was coming too. He was prepared and maybe a little irritated.
Stoakes got the last word though. He made the Cubs pay and helped the Webster City baseball team avoid what would have been a lousy loss Tuesday night.
In a 5-all game in the top of the seventh, Nevada intentionally walked Tyler Olson for the second time to get to Stoakes. It worked in the fifth, as Stoakes watched a third strike go by with the bases loaded. But in the seventh he jumped on the first pitch from Max Hoffman and dumped a single into center field that scored the go-ahead run in the Lynx come-from-behind 9-5 victory.
That’s maturity. That’s resiliency.
“I just felt like there was a time to step up and that was the time,” Stoakes said. “I hadn’t jumped on the (other Nevada pitchers), but that guy I felt like I could time him well.”
Stoakes admitted the first intentional walk to Olson affected his approach. He wasn’t fooled twice though.
“The first one I was kind of in my head the entire at bat,” he said. “But the second time I was prepared for it.”
WCHS (13-6) trailed 5-4 entering the seventh inning, but sent 11 guys to the plate and scored five runs in its final at bat. Another youngster, CJ Hisler, provided the team’s only other hit in the inning two batters prior to Stoakes. His line shot into left-center plated Sean Carver with the tying run and it opened the floodgates.
Hisler, who hits out of the No. 9 slot and boasts a .396 average, went 3 for 4 and scored twice.
Young kids doing big things.
“The kid is an all-around athlete, so the moments like that really aren’t too big for him,” WCHS head coach Adison Kehoe said of Hisler. “He hasn’t even walked down the high school halls yet, but he’s very mature game wise. He was smiling before he even hit the ball.”
WCHS did the little things early in the seventh to set the stage for Hisler and Stoakes. Freshman Zach Dyvig stepped off the bench and laid down a two-strike sacrifice bunt to move runners to second and third with just one out. Hisler followed with the equalizer.
“He has probably the best barrel control of anyone on the team,” Kehoe said of Dyvig. “So in a situation like that … you could see the confidence in him, even with two strikes.”
Stoakes’ base hit broke Nevada. Dylan Steen and Caleb Olson were both plunked with pitches that brought two more runs in, and Carver walked with the bases loaded to increase the lead to four runs.
The seventh inning outburst took much of the stench off what was an otherwise subpar effort from the Lynx. After running out to an early 4-0 lead, WCHS made three errors and gave up five unanswered runs in the middle frames to fall behind.
“This game, from the first inning to the seventh, has been our season in a nutshell as far as getting up, letting off and giving teams additional outs and then having to find a way back into it,” Kehoe said. “It was an emotional roller coaster. But the best thing about it is the kids who may have struggled early in the game were the ones that came through at the end of the game.”
The two teams combined for eight errors, 15 walks and 17 strikeouts.
Steen went 2 for 3 with the Lynx only extra-base hit — a fourth-inning double — and two RBIs. Caleb Olson also had two RBIs to go along with one hit. Beau Klaver added an RBI base knock.
Nevada out hit WCHS, 10-9. Thomas Crawford, Ty Dittmer and Ryne Isleb all had two hits for the Cubs and Isleb drove in two, including the go-ahead run in the fifth on a high chopper to Ty McKinney at third.
Carson Struchen got the start on the mound for WCHS and went 22⁄3 before being pulled for Caleb Olson. He went the rest of the way and picked up the win after allowing just four hits and one earned run over 41⁄3 innings. Olson fanned five.
WCHS was back at home last night to take on North Central Conference rival Humboldt. The Lynx will travel to Algona Saturday evening to face Garrigan in a clash against its former conference rival.
Webster City 9, Nevada 5
Tuesday at Nevada
Web City 310 000 5 — 9 9 3
Nevada 013 010 0 — 5 10 5
Carson Struchen, Caleb Olson (3) and Devon Stoakes. Brock Dutton, Jordan Barrett (2), Max Hoffman (7) and Keaton Fry. W — C. Olson. L — Barrett. Multiple hits — WC: CJ Hisler (3), Dylan Steen; NEV: Thomas Crawford, Ty Dittmer, Ryne Isleb. 2B — WC: Steen; NEV: Ross Uthe. RBI — WC: Steen (2), C. Olson (2), Stoakes, Hisler, Beau Klaver, Sean Carver; NEV: Isleb (2), Crawford, Connor Hines.