A hard fall season taught the Dieterich Movin’ Maroons a career’s worth of lessons about one-run ballgames.
It was Dieterich’s white whale in 2013, losing a number of one-run games in heartbreaking fashion. Flash forward to Monday, when they led Shelbyville 1-0 in the seventh inning, one strike away from winning, before Garrett Brachbill hit a looping single over first base to tie the game at 1-1.
But the lessons had taken hold. Alex Bohnhoff got out of a bases-loaded jam in the eighth, walked with two outs and scored the game-winning run two batters later on a walkoff single by Tanner Traub to clinch a 2-1 win.
“This game resembled a lot of the games we had in the fall,” said Dieterich head coach Jamie VanScyoc. “It was just a matter of the ball bouncing our way. We battled back today. That’s just the kind of leadership we’ve had with Tanner, Alex and Jake (Bohnhoff).”
While Bohnhoff snuck out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the top of the eighth, it was his baserunning that made the difference in the bottom half.
He drew a two-out walk against Tyler Hendryx, who had struck out 15 to that point. Bohnhoff advanced to second when catcher Brett Peifer tried to pick him off at first, only to have first baseman Ryan Stenger have his head down and miss the throw.
From there, he was in Hendryx’s head, dancing repeatedly off second while Jake Bohnhoff took his base on a long at-bat.
Traub stepped up, who had blown the save in the seventh inning, and imitated Brachbill with an RBI single to right, although this time with some authority.
The Movin’ Maroons mustered just three hits and struck out 15 times, but found a way, in part to Alex Bohnhoff on the basepaths.
“(Hendryx) had been cruising,” VanScyoc said. “Dancing over there, drawing attention to himself. That might have rattled their pitcher, Jake battled and Alex drawing attention to himself. Sometimes, that’s enough for a runner to get in the pitcher’s mind.
For the first five innings, it was the Charlie Thoele show for Dieterich, as the freshman pitcher held Shelbyville scoreless, only briefly getting in trouble in the fourth before forcing a one-out double play to keep things scoreless.
Thoele struck out five and allowed just two hits, earning a 1-0 lead in the second when Cole Hartke walked to lead off the inning before advancing on two groundouts and scoring on a wild pitch.
Traub put two on with one out before escaping in the sixth, and had Brachbill one strike away in the seventh before the Rams tied it.
Bohnhoff got into trouble of his own in the eighth, as Luke McConnell reached on an error, Luke Duckett walked and Bart Kennell was hit by a pitch with one out following a sacrifice bunt.
But he struck out Dylan Patch and got Stenger to ground out to Traub at short to end the frame. The pitching staff performed, which will be key for the Movin’ Maroons this spring.
“Charlie came out and threw five strong innings for us,” VanScyoc said. “He’s going to be a guy that pitches to contact, and we’re going to play solid defense behind him.”
Traub was 2-for-4 with an RBI, Bohnhoff was 1-for-2 with a run and two walks, and Hartke was 0-for-2 with a run and a walk.
Dieterich (1-0) heads to Oblong today, weather permitting.
Shelbyville 000 000 10 1 3 2
Dieterich 010 000 01 2 3 1
WP - A. Bohnhoff (1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 K, 1 BB) LP - Hendryx (7.2 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 15 K, 3 BB)
Shelbyville: Brachbill (1-3, RBI, BB, SB); Kennell (1-2, R, BB, SB); Williams (1-3, SB)
Dieterich: A. Bohnhoff (1-3, 2 BB, R); J. Bohnhoff (0-3, BB); Traub (2-4, RBI); Hartke (0-2, R, BB)