Walks doom Indians in loss

Staff photo by Steve Muscatello Minnesota Valley Lutheran’s Owen Rich slides into second getting past the tag from Sleepy Eye’s Jocob Meyer Monday at Johnson Park in New Ulm.

NEW ULM — With Sleepy Eye without its top two pitchers Matthew Sellner and Jacob Berg because of pitching on Friday, Sleepy Eye head coach Aaron Nesvold was forced to find some pitching depth Monday afternoon in their Tomahawk Conference meeting with Minnesota Valley Lutheran at Johnson Park.

While the four pitchers used by Nesvold held MVL to seven hits, they were not as successful in other aspects of the game.

The four Indians’ pitchers combined for 12 walks, a hit batsman, two wild pitches and two balks as the Chargers downed Sleepy Eye 14-2. The game was stopped after 4 1/2 innings because of the 10-run lead rule.

Jace Marotz got the win for MVL (6-8, 4-7). He went four innings and allowed one run on four hits.

Owen Rich pitched the top of the fifth and permitted one run.

Nate Walter took the loss for the Indians (8-7, 8-7). He went three innings and was charged with six runs.

Ethan Fischer, Allen Arneson and Jacob Meyer all saw time on the mound.

Rich and Leyton Brau each had two hits for the Chargers.

Brau, Franklin, Selvey and Derek Weisensel each had two RBIs.

MVL out-hit Sleepy Eye 7-6 in the game.

“With our doubleheader Friday [against New Ulm Cathedral] we knew that our best two [pitchers] were not going to be available,” Nesvold said. “But I was hoping that we would have better efforts that what we had. Unfortunately it wasn’t,”

Chargers’ head coach John Gunderson understood what Nesvold and the Indians were feeling.

“With the pitch counts the way they are, all of us are in the same position,” he said.

Of the 12 free passes issued by Indians’ pitchers in the game, eight of them scored, including two in the first inning when two scored on an error and the third on a Franklin Selvey sacrifice fly.

Sleepy Eye got a run in the third on a Nathan Walter RBI single.

MVL added three more runs in the bottom of the inning on a walk, a hit batter, a ground out and two singles.

The Chargers sent 12 men to the plate in the fourth to score eight runs using six walks and singles from Brau, Selvey and Teddy Giefer.

Sleepy Eye added its final run in the top of the fifth on doubles off of the bats of Walter and Jackson Huiras.