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MINSTER – Both of Auglaize County’s remaining teams in the ACME district tournament overcame dicey early innings to pick up wins on Monday night at Hanover Street Park and set up a match-up tonight.
Minster fell behind by four runs early before scoring 14 unanswered runs in a 14-4 run-rule win over Anna while Auglaize County sectional champ Wapakoneta escaped from a bases-loaded jam in the fourth inning with a double play and went on to defeat Fort Loramie 9-2 in the nightcap.
Minster and Wapakoneta will play tonight at 6:30 p.m. at Minster.
Fort Loramie and Anna will play each other on Wednesday night in an elimination game.
WAPAKONETA 9, FORT LORAMIE 2
Chandler Kaeck came on in relief in the fourth inning and got Wapakoneta out of a bases-loaded jam with the go-ahead run on base.
After Brandon Miller departed with the bases loaded and Wapak clinging to a 4-2 lead, Kaeck coaxed Fort Loramie leadoff hitter Aaron Boerger to ground to Wapak shortstop Josh Apple. Apple stepped on second for the force out and threw on to first to end the threat.
Wapakoneta rolled from that point on.
The Redskins extended their lead with two runs in the fifth on a Brandon Miller RBI grounder and Marshall Gerlach’s RBI single for a 6-2 lead.
Wapak scored three runs in the sixth. Brandon Schreiber’s grounder brought home Apple and Kaeck’s opposite field double down the left field line plated Schreiber and Miller to put the Redskins up 6-2.
Kaeck worked three and 2-3 innings of relief, striking out six and walking two. He struck out the side to end the game in the seventh.
Fort Loramie’s runs came in the third and fourth innings.
A throwing error by Wapakoneta in the third allowed Boerger to go all the way around the bases from first base after a Zach Brandewie one-out single to right field got under the glove.
Fort Loramie scored just one run in the fourth despite loading the bases twice in the inning.
After Devon Braun reached on an error, Darren Gephart was hit by a pitch and Tanner Rittenhouse singled softly into left field to load the bases, Grant Olberding brought home a run with a sacrifice fly to medium deep center that brought home Braun. After a walk to ninth hitter Blake Gaier re-loaded the bases, Wapak starter Brandon MIller departed in favor of Kaeck. Kaeck got the game-changing double play.
MINSTER 14, ANNA 4
The whole tenor of the opening game changed in the bottom of the fourth inning with Minster’s two-out rally.
Trailing 4-3 in a tight game, Minster had four straight players reach base after the first two batters were out in the inning.
Max Huber singled, Jay Eilerman walked and then Andrew Knapke blasted a two-run double over the head of the Anna left fielder to give the Wildcats their first lead of the game at 5-4. Knapke came around from second to score on an Anna error.
Minster followed that up with an eight-run fifth inning that triggered the 10-run rule.
Devon Poeppelman singled in a run and four runs scored on wild pitches in the inning.
Clay Brown’s two-run single drove in J.R. Nixon and Brandon Hoying to end the game.
Minster got three runs in the second inning on an RBI groundout by Jacob Wuebker, an RBI single by Eilerman and an infield RBI single by Andrew Knapke.
Knapke finished the game 2 for 2 with three runs batted in. Clay Brown was 2 for 3 with two runs batted in. Eilerman scored three runs.
Hoying started the game for MInster on the mound and worked the complete game. He gave up four runs — only one of them earned — on seven hits. He struck out eight and walked two.
Anna’a Josh Robinson took the loss. He worked four and one-third innings, giving up 11 runs on nine hits. He struck out three and walked four.
Luke Cummings led the Rockets at the plate. He went 2 for 3 with two runs batted in.