YME 2, RCW 0
Yellow Medicine East’s Conor Christensen would be the last one standing after a pitchers duel Tuesday night at Richter Field. The junior would best Renville County West’s Ryan Fransen with a complete-game shutout performance as the Sting ground out a 2-0 non-conference victory.
Christensen and Fransen would bandy about five scoreless innings of baseball before the Sting struck with a pair of doubles in the bottom of the sixth. Austin Thorstad hit a double with one out, and Aaron Zieske followed with his own RBI double to give the Sting the lead. An errant throw by the Jaguars catcher later in the sixth allowed YME to score another run on the error.
Christensen would close the game in the seventh and finish with a three-hit, one walk and nine strike-out line. Meanwhile, Fransen would end the night giving up just two hits, one earned run, one walk and again— nine strikeouts.
“This is his first start, first varsity start, all that,” said YME head coach Trevor Schulte about his pitcher. “He was really composed out there. Nothing seems to rattle him. He had good composure. He has a good make-up, good mechanics. It’s hard to find them like that in high school, with that type of composure.”
Schulte was impressed with Christensen’s low pitch count and when adding his performance to a number of solid performances by YME pitchers already this season, an area that was once a question mark for this team prior to the season, looks to have now been answered.
“I think he threw right around 85 pitches for seven innings, which is pretty doggone good. He got ahead of hitters, he stayed ahead of hitters, he threw strikes, he didn’t try to do too much. He was spotting his fast ball well. He really gave us a start there and that’s a big thing,” said Schulte.
YME gets back to conference play Thursday against Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City.
Said Schulte, “Defensively we’ve played sound defensive baseball; we know where to go with the ball and things like that. And our pitching is giving us a chance to win. Our bats still aren’t quite there, yet. We got two hits today and maybe only got four balls out to the outfield. We have to do a better job at the plate, there’s no doubt about it, but hopefully as we get going here we can build some confidence at the plate... It just takes one guy to do it and the others will follow.
RCW 000 000 0 — 0 3 2
YME 000 002 x — 2 2 0
Renville County West: Brett Feldman 1-for-3, Griffin Schaub 2-for-3
Yellow Medicine East: Austin Thorstad 1-for-2, 2b, Aaron Zieske 1-for-3, 2b, rbi
Renville County West: Ryan Fransen (L) 6-2-2-1-1-9
Yellow Medicine East: Conor Christensen (W) 7-3-0-0-1-9