By Steve Undseth - Ashby, MN
The Hillcrest baseball team outlasted Ashby 3-2 in an 11-inning marathon on a beautiful Friday evening in Ashby. Devon Apgar singled to lead off the 11th, was sacrificed to 2nd base by Ethan Wentzel, stole third, and scored on a Frankie Sandnes groundout. Kevin Castro pitched the last two innings to earn the win. Jordan Lillemon received the tough luck loss after pitching 6 scoreless innings in relief before allowing the one run.
Zach Nersten pitched 7 strong innings for the Comets, allowing just one earned run, 4 hits, and 7 strikeouts. Devon Apgar pitched two innings of scoreless relief with 3 strikeouts. Castro did not allow a hit and struck out two in his 2 innings.
The Comets scored in the first when Mark Undseth led off with a single, advanced to 2nd on a walk, and scored on Joe Ommundsen's single. Ashby answered in the bottom of the inning when Drew Hansen was hit by a pitch, stole 2nd, and scored on Lillemon's single.
The Comets took a 2-1 lead in the third when Undseth again led off with a single, moved to third on Ommundsen's double, and scored on a sacrifice fly by Danny Tungseth. That lead held up until 2 outs in the 7th when Ashby pushed across an unearned run to send the game into extra innings. Reed Hansen reached on an error, advanced to 2nd on a wild pitch, and scored on Justice Witt's single to left.
"I was pleased with our pitching, but we struggled offensively all day and didn't help our cause with a couple key errors defensively either. Devon gave us a great effort to steal that last run in the 11th, and we were able to come away with a W," said Coach Steve Undseh after the game.
The Comets are now 5-3 in the Pheasant Conference and will host Hancock in an early 3 o'clock start on Monday, May 17 at Legion Field.