The same problems that plagued Sioux Falls Post 15 East against Rapid City Post 22 Friday night came back to haunt it a day later against the other Rapid City team.
While it wasn’t another eight-error night, Post 15 East still committed five crippling errors in a 13-3 loss to Rapid City Post 320 Saturday at Harmodon Park.
The Stars will face Renner Post 307 Sunday at 1 p.m. for a chance to play Post 22 for the championship. Post 15 East has been eliminated. The loss comes just three days after Post 15 East beat 320 in the opening round, 4-3.
All-in-all, Post 15 East’s defense was pretty solid aside from the fourth, fifth and sixth innings, where Post 320 blew the game open. The Stars scored seven times in those three innings, and just four of those were earned.
Post 320 head coach Paul Pool said the plan was to put the ball in play and make Post 15 East prove they could make plays.
“That’s kind of been our approach,” Pool said. “See pitches, extend innings, make the opposing pitchers work and put the balls in play to make them have to beat you.”
Stagnant on offense through the first three innings, a lazy popup that got lost in the sun woke up the Stars’ bats.
Third baseman Austin Kubik couldn’t locate the ball off of Curtis Stahlecker’s bat, and Post 320 took advantage. The Stars sent all nine batters to the plate, scoring four runs highlighted by a two-run triple from pitcher Seth Brewer.
Post 320 batted around again an inning later, and four Post 15 errors led to another four runs for the Stars in the fifth and sixth innings.
Also plaguing East both days was a lack of capitalizing on solid scoring chances.
Post 15 East left six runners in scoring position in the game’s first six innings Saturday.
“All tournament we maybe pressed too much offensively,” said East head coach Matt Storo. “Even in the first two games when we won, we scored a few runs early on and didn’t do a whole lot after that. (Friday) we had chances in almost every inning, and … we couldn’t scratch anything across. Today, we had a ton of chances again. We had chances to score first, and it didn’t really happen until the eighth.”
Post 15 East managed to push across three runs in that inning, but a 6-4-3 double play ended the bases loaded, one-out threat, and Post 320 responded with five runs.
Seth Brewer dominated in both phases of the game for Post 320. The 6-foot-1 right hander earned the win on the mound with seven scoreless innings while batting 3-for-5 with a triple and four RBI.
“It was pretty awesome,” Pool said of Brewer’s performance. “He stepped up big time.”
G1 – Rapid City Post 320 vs. Renner Post 307, 1 p.m.
Championship – G1 winner vs. Rapid City Post 22, 5 p.m.
Follow Ryan Heuer on Twitter at @ArgusRHeuer.