NEW ULM - Russ Hoffman's two-out single in the bottom of the seventh inning scored Gabe Knowles and Collin Helget and lifted New Ulm Cathedral to a 4-3 win over Sleepy Eye St. Mary's Friday in a Tomahawk Conference game at Mueller Park
Alex Guggisberg got the win in relief for Cathedral. He pitched the final 2 2/3 innings. Nate Palmer started for the Greyhounds and allowed all three runs.
Jon Kopacek adsorbed the loss for St. Mary's, now 5-2. He allowed seven hits.
Staff photo by Steve Muscatello
Sleepy Eye St. Mary’s catcher Mike Hirsch does not come up with the throw as New Ulm Cathedral’s Collin Helget (5) scores the winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning Friday at Mueller Park in New Ulm. Reacting in the background are the Greyhounds’ James Herzog (15), Mike Skillings (5) and Jack Schwartz (right).
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Hoffman led Cathedral with two hits and drove in two runs.
Jared Beltz had two hits for the Knights.
Cathedral trailed the Knights 3-2 going into the bottom of the seventh before the rally started.
Knowles coaxed a lead-off walk and Palmer was hit by a pitch. A Collin Helget grounder forced Palmer at second and moved Knowles to third. Helget stole second with two outs setting the stage for Hoffman, who turned on 2-2 fastball from Kopacek and drove it into left field for the win.
"I have not gotten many hits in the last two games so it was nice to get a hit that won the game," Hoffman said. "He was throwing fastballs on the outside like every good pitcher tries to do."
For Cathedral Coach Bob Weier who saw his team improve to 6-1, the win was a good way to rebound after a tough doubleheader at Springfield on Thursday.
"I am proud of our players," he said. "We kind of stunk it up in the beginning but we toughed it out."
Woitas thought that the game was one of missed opportunities for both teams.
"But they came up clutch at the end and we had numerous times earlier when we could have gotten a clutch hit and gotten more runs," Woitas said.
The Knights stranded 10-runners on base in the game.
St. Mary's took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second without the aid of a hit using a Palmer walk to John Brandel, two wild pitches and a throwing error for a run.
Cathedral struck back in the bottom of the third with two runs.
Knowles and Palmer singled before Helget laced an RBI single to center field that plated Knowles. A groundout and a Brandon Beranek sacrifice fly added another run.
Brandon Helget's RBI double and a Beltz base hit added another run for a 3-2 Knights' lead.
Cathedral was on the receiving end of a big play by the Knights in the bottom of the sixth inning when Hoffman and Jack Schwartz walked. James Herzog then drove a base hit to center field and when Hoffman tried to score, he was gunned down at the plate on a perfect throw from centerfielder Mike Zinniel to catcher Mike Hirsch.
But in the seventh, Hoffman made an even bigger play with his base hit.
"Alex (Guggisberg) did a nice job in his first appearance as a varsity pitcher," Weier said. "We beat a very good team today."