By Steve Peterson
Akron-Westfield seniors who have been part of the baseball program since their eighth grade year will be honored July 10 when the Westerners battle Sioux Center in non-conference action at Sargent Field.
Seniors on the team, which started the week battling for a .500 overall record, are catcher Gregg Taylor; shortstop and pitcher Cory Eskra; outfielder and pitcher Cole Oltmanns; third baseman Spencer Frankl; first baseman and pitcher Chet Willer; and first baseman Kyle Schroeder. They will be recognized with their parents after the 6:00 p.m. Junior Varsity game (before the varsity contest).
“They’re a great group of kids,” said A-W head coach Gordy Johnson.
Johnson said the Westerners believe there is still a lot of baseball left with the beginning of the “second season” of the Class 1A playoffs, against Kingsley-Pierson at Woodbury Central of Moville at 7:00 p.m, July 16.
The Westerners dropped a 7-1 decision to War Eagle Conference champion and state ranked Hinton on July 3. A-W’s record stood at 11-10 overall. 9-9 WEC and 0-3 for last week before the final week of the regular season which also included a July 8 contest at Remsen Union and a makeup game at home against Remsen- St. Mary’s on July 11.
“We need to have a good week,” said Johnson.
Hinton took a 4-0 lead in the first inning last Wednesday and never looked back in gaining its 20th win, 20-3 overall, 17-1 in the WEC. Skyler Beiler was 3-for-4 as was Cory Peters to lead the Blackhawks’ 12-hit attack. Morgan Wenzel scattered five A-W hits as he gained the pitching win.
“That’s what happens when you don’t play your best baseball in this conference,” said Johnson.
For A-W last Wednesday, Caleb Colt had two singles. Cole Oltmanns reached on a walk twice and had an RBI single.
Jacob Neubrand reached base on a walk twice and scored a run. Taylor reached on a walk.
Johnson said the tough league will ready A-W for the playoffs.
A-W takes on Kingsley-Pierson at 7:00 p.m., July 16 at Woodbury Central of Moville in Class 1A District No. 16 first round play.
Oltmanns was 1-for-2 with two walks.
Colt was 2-for-4.
Willer was 2-for-4.
Taylor had one walk.
Neubrand scored one run and had two walks.
The Westerners had five hits and five walks.
For pitching Willer took the loss and worked six and one-third innings, allowing 10 hits and two walks and struck out four. Eskra pitched for two-thirds inning and gave up two hits and struck out one.
Game totals, A-W’s 2-0 loss to West Sioux July 2 there
Willer was 2-for-3 and had the only hits or offense.
In pitching Neubrand started and worked one-third inning, giving up three walks. Dylan Irizarry worked three innings and allowed one walk and struck out three. Colt pitched two and two-thirds innings, took the loss, allowing four hits, two walks and struck out two.