Prep Baseball Report

NorthWood Holds Off Wawasee in NLC Clash

Steve Krah
PBR Indiana Correspondent

SYRACUSE — There was drama and plenty of teeth chattering Friday,

April 19 as NorthWood edged Wawasee 2-1 in Northern Lakes Conference high school baseball.

The Panthers (6-2, 3-0) nipped the Warriors (5-3, 1-2) in a game during a blustery afternoon with the wind chill in the 30’s.

The contest, which was moved from NorthWood to Wawasee because of wet grounds, ended with the bases loaded for the home team.

Junior left-hander Cooper Davis (6 innings, 1 run, 3 hits, 6 strikeouts, 0 walks, 80 pitches) was the winning pitcher.

“He was remarkable,” said NorthWood coach A.J. Risedorph of Davis.

“Last year as a sophomore, he was up with (the varsity) but was only able to see limited opportunities. For him to be able to step up and give us two great relief appearances already, he earned tonight’s start. Man, he showed up. We’re excited to see what he can continue to do.”

Senior right-hander Jason Cripe (1 inning, 0 runs, 1 hit, 2 strikeouts, 1 walk, 20 pitches) earned the save. Junior right-hander Carter Woody (7 innings, 2 runs, 4 hits, 7 strikeouts, 0 walks, 94 pitches) absorbed the loss.

Cripe relieved left-hander Davis, who went the first six innings, to begin the seventh.

Sophomore Parker Young drew a lead-off walk. Junior courtesy runner Ethan Garza stole second base.

After two strikeouts, the Warriors filled the sacks when Woody was hit by a pitch and junior Logan Adkins reached base on a slow-rollerinfield single.

Cripe then coaxed a game-ending fielder’s choice. The Panthers left a runner against Woody in the top of a score-free seventh.

Junior Jack Wysong lashed a one-hit single to center. Sophomore pinch runner Nate Newcomer stole second base, but got no further as Woody coerced a fly-out and then racked up a strikeout to end the threat.

Wawasee went down in order against Davis in the bottom of the sixth with two fly-outs and a a groundout.

NorthWood took a 2-1 lead with a two-out run against Woody in the top of the sixth.

Junior No. 9 hitter Josh Stafford was hit by a pitch to open the inning, moved to second base on senior Kyler Hauptli’s sacrifice bunt and third base on sophomore Sergio Lira Ayala’s groundout.

Senior lefty swinger Matt Dutkowski served a 2-1 pitch into left to plate Stafford with the go-ahead run.

“Matt Dutkowski has been very consistent for us with great approaches,” said Risedorph. “He’s seeing the ball very well. More

importantly, guys are able to get on base in front of him in order for him to drive them in.”

Risedorph saw his team try to get the ball down on a windy day.

“Focusing on hitting the opposite-field gaps,” said Risedorph. “That’s what we’ve been able to do with some of our hitters.”

Wawasee stranded a runner at third base against Davis in the bottom of the fifth.

“The outcome’s tough — 2 to 1 — but that’s good baseball game,” said Warriors coach Brent Doty. “Credit NorthWood. They’re a good team. They’ve been solid for a long time. “They got a big hit with two outs and it eluded us.” 

 Woody ended Davis’ streak of batters retired at 12 with a one-out single to right. Courtesy runner Garza stole second base and moved to third base on Adkins’ groundout.

The threat was squelched when NorthWood second baseman Wysong caught a line drive by junior pinch hitter Austin Baker for the third out.

It was a three-up and three-down frame for Woody in the top of the Panthers fifth with a fly-out and two strikeouts.

Davis extended his streak of batters retired to 11 in the Warrior fourth with a comebacker to the mound, fly-out and junior right fielder Jaden Miller throwing a runner out at first base.

Wawasee’s defense turned an inning-ending double play in a scoreless NorthWood fourth — sophomore shortstop Kameron Salazar to senior second baseman Jacob Carson to junior first baseman Levi Brown.

The twin killing wiped out the one-out single to center against Woody by Miller.

With a strikeout, fly-out and groundout against Davis, the Warriors went down in succession in the bottom of the third.

The Panthers went down in order against Woody in the top of the third with two caught-looking strikeouts and an infield pop-out.

Davis put Wawasee down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the second with two strikeouts and a groundout. 

Woody retired NorthWood in order in the top pf the second with two strikeouts and a comebacker to the mound.

The Warriors tied the score at 1-1 with one run against Davis in the bottom of the first.

Junior Gabe Moore produced a lead-off infield single and moved to third base on Salazar’s one-out double to center and scored on Young’s sacrifice fly to right.

Davis struck out two batters in the inning.

The Panthers scored one run against Woody in the top of the first.

Hauptli rapped a lead-off double to right, moved to third base on Lira Ayala’s groundout and scored on Miller’s fielder’s choice.

“We come out swinging in the first inning and put pressure on (the opposition),” said Risedorph. “We have to find more ways to put pressure on teams in the middle of the game. That way, hopefully, it’s not such a nail-biter at the end.”

Both teams are scheduled to play NLC games at home Monday, April 22 —NorthWood against Warsaw and Wawasee against Northridge.

More HS Coverage