Offense gives Trinity early Series lead

More news about: Keystone | Trinity (Texas)
Jeremy Wolf walked three times, had two hits, scoring twice in Trinity's win.
By Steve Frommell,

There was no postgame news conference between games of the doubleheader.

By Austin Walther

GRAND CHUTE, Wis. -- Drew Butler delivered even more big hits on Tuesday, as the Trinity (Texas) offense rapped out 14 hits and drew 11 walks en route to a 14-6 win vs. Keystone in Game 1 of the Division III baseball Championship Series on Tuesday afternoon.

Trinity can close out the series on Tuesday night as the Tigers and Giants are scheduled to play again at approximately 7 p.m. CDT following a rain delay. Tuesday is the fourth day of the five in Appleton that have had rain-related delays.

Butler went 4-for-6 with three doubles and six RBI for the Tigers, giving him a tournament-best 10 runs batted in.

Trinity led practically wire to wire, including taking a 1-0 lead in the first when Jeremy Wolf hit a two-out single and Butler followed with a double off the left field wall.

Keystone evened the score at one in the third as Alex Herceg hit a solo homer to lead off the inning. The Giants threatened again, loading the bases with two outs, but Trinity starter Troy Nelson got Billy Nelson to ground out.

Meanwhile, Keystone starter Felix Baez settled in after giving up a run in the first, retiring his next seven batters.

Wolf was the recipient of another double from Butler in the fourth inning to give Trinity the lead back at 2-1. Butler came around to score after Jose Santos hit a double to left and Santos scored on a two out RBI single from Carter McEachern to give the Tigers a 4-1 lead after the fourth.

Keystone started the fifth when Julian Lanfranco drew a walk and advanced to third on a passed ball and sacrifice fielder’s choice. Chris Triano delivered a bases clearing double with runners on first and third to cut into Trinity’s lead putting the score 4-3. Troy Nelson was then able to strikeout Billy Nelson to preserve the lead.

Butler knocked in his third RBI double of the game in the fifth when he drove in Colin Serkowski to give Trinity a 5-3 lead. Baez then retired the last two batters to keep the deficit at two.

Danny O’Neill relieved Baez and for the third consecutive inning, Butler connected on another RBI hit, driving in two with the bases loaded, increasing the Tigers’ lead 7-3 after six.

The Giants drew two walks in the seventh inning forcing Kevin Flores to come in on relief with two on and one out. Nate Ross then singled to right with two outs and scored a run to cut the lead to 7-4.

The third pitcher for the Giants, Jeffery Ledesma only pitched a third of an inning after walking two Trinity batters and giving up two hits. Serkowski ultimately forced JP Ramirez to enter the game for Keystone with a two RBI single increasing the Tigers’ lead to 9-4 in the seventh.

Ramirez only faced one batter to load the bases with a walk. Reliever Nick Spinella was able to force a grounder to get Connor Moore out at home, but walked Nick Jewett for Trinity’s 10th run of the game putting the score 10-4.

Jack Simons came in the eighth as Keystone’s sixth pitcher of the game and Trinity kept tacking on more runs. Moore hit a sacrifice fly to center to score Waters. With bases loaded and one out, Wolf singled to score McEachern.

Butler concluded his six RBI game with a fielder’s choice and was lifted for a pinch runner.

Keystone went to their bench as pinch hitters Joseph Santana and Tony Hunter II reached on a pair of hits and Ross singled to score Santana. Randy Torres drew a pinch hit walk and Herceg singled to drive in Hunter, but Flores finished the game by striking out the side.

Baez went five innings, giving up eight hits and five runs on the afternoon to take the loss, falling to 10-3. Troy Nelson went six and a third innings for the Tigers to get the win, improving to 6-1. Flores went the final two and two-thirds to pick up his second save.

Trinity will look to close out the series at 7 p.m.