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Another up and down week for SCC baseball

The roller coaster season of the St. Croix Central baseball team continues to have high highs and low lows.

The Panthers added another high to the season last Tuesday, beating Prescott 2-1. At that time Prescott only had two losses in the Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Central had delivered them both. Prescott got a third loss on Monday, when the Cards and Osceola split a double-header, leaving both teams tied atop the conference standings.

Central's week plummeted downhill sharply after the win over Prescott. Last Thursday the Panthers jumped to a 5-0 lead over Colfax. The Panther defense then crashed, allowing Colfax to come back for a 15-8 win.

"That was probably our poorest game as a team," said Central coach Mike Fern.

Seven of Colfax's 15 runs were earned as the Panthers struggled throughout the game on defense.

The loss to Colfax was followed by a 7-2 loss to Boyceville Monday. Fern said the Colfax loss knocked the Panthers out of the running for the conference championship and it gutted the team's enthusiasm. He said the team still needs to bounce back, because every game is important for tournament seeding. The WIAA regional seeding was Wednesday night and Fern was hoping to get a second or third seed for the Panthers, meaning they would open the tournament trail at home. The first round of WIAA baseball tournaments is on May 23. Central's game that night will need to be played early, because that is also graduation night for the Central seniors.

Central's hitters never were able to solve Boyceville pitcher Adam Hakanson Monday. He struck out 14 Panthers during the game.

The Panthers got five hits in the game, including two each from Tyler Cody and D.J. Frank.

Beating Prescott's baseball team once in a season would be the crowning moment for most teams' seasons in the Dunn-St. Croix Conference.

So what happens when a team beats Prescott twice?

St. Croix Central's baseball team just made the D-SC race a race again after beating Prescott 2-1 last Tuesday. By beating Prescott twice the Panthers had put themselves back into the conference race, one game behind Prescott.

Central won the game by scoring once in the top of the eighth inning. Scott Ramberg led off the eighth with a walk. He moved up a base on a wild pitch, then scored on Tyler Cody's single. The Panthers threatened to do more damage in the eighth, but left the bases loaded.

Central pitcher Adam Reyzer then gave up a leadoff double in the bottom of the eighth inning. But after two fly outs and a groundout, the Panthers were celebrating their second win of the season over Prescott.

Reyzer threw the complete game, allowing eight hits. He struck out two Prescott batters, but only walked one.

The main difference between this win and Central's first win over Prescott was defense. In that game the Panthers overcame nine errors to win. This time the Panthers did not commit a single error in the field.

Dan Odden scored Central's first run of the game to tie the game 1-1 in the top of the seventh. Odden led off with a single and moved to second on a walk. He then tried to steal third base and the throw was wild, giving Odden time to get home with the tying run.

Dave Newman
Dave Newman has been the sports editor at the New Richmond News since 1988. He has covered the action in the Middle Border Conference, Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Big Rivers Conference for nearly 30 years.
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