2012 Iowa Conference champions
PELLA — The Central College offense came alive in the ninth inning as the Dutch rallied for a 2-1, extra-inning victory over Coe College Saturday.
After a 7-2 setback in the opener, Central’s offense was quieted through eight quick frames in the nightcap. The Kohawks were also held scoreless until the ninth inning when they took a 1-0 lead after a walked batter scored from a throwing error.
But Central battled back. Leading off, first baseman Seth Carson (sophomore, Woodridge, Ill., Downers Grove South HS) punched a single to left field and advanced with a sacrifice bunt from second baseman Adam Ariola (sophomore, Bloomington, Ill., Normal HS). Carson reached third when third baseman Jordan Judkins (sophomore, Marshalltown) lined a shot to right field and crossed the plate on an error. An out later, Judkins reached second by a wild pitch. Then catcher Max Seeman (senior, Panora, Panorama HS) ripped a hard shot to the shortstop. The throw took a bounce and Coe’s first baseman was unable to get Seeman out on the tag, allowing Judkins to score the game-winning run.
“In a game like that, when both offenses are struggling, a mistake is probably going to win or lose you the game,” coach Adam Stevens said. “The good thing is we put the ball in play and put pressure on them and took advantage of a mistake on their side.”
Central (25-7 overall, 15-3 conference) committed one error defensively while Coe had four. Judson McKown (sophomore, Maple Plain, Minn., Orono HS) recorded the win, pitching 1.2 innings while allowing one hit and one earned run. He had two walks and two strikeouts. Starting pitcher Dirk Lindaman (junior, Ankeny) gave up just two hits in 7.1 innings and struck out two and walked one.
“Dirk was as good as he’s been all year,” Stevens said. “And we played great defense throughout the game to keep us in it. We’ve been doing that all year – giving ourselves a chance at the end of the game to win and it happened again today.”
In the first game, Coe (19-13 overall, 10-8 conference) struck early and scored in the first and third innings. Central tied the game at 2-2 with runs in the fourth and fifth. But the Kohawks posted a three-run sixth inning and tacked on two more in the seventh to lock up the win.
“Give Coe credit,” Stevens said. “They played well and came back at the end.”
Both teams had one error but Coe outhit the Dutch 9-5. Starter Ryan Goetzinger (junior, Mason City) was charged with the loss on the mound. He tossed 5.1 innings and yielded six hits and five earned runs while walking four and striking out six. Bret Bell (senior, Jewell, South Hamilton HS) pitched 1.2 innings and gave up three hits and two earned runs.
Shortstop Mike Furlong (senior, Davenport, Assumption) swiped his 12th stolen base of the year in the fifth inning, becoming Central’s all-time career stolen base leader. He’s only been caught stealing nine times (51-60) and already holds the stolen base attempts mark. The previous record was set by Joe Byers (50-55) from 1997-2000.
Central captured the three-game Iowa Conference series with a 6-5 win in the nine-inning matchup Friday afternoon. Saturday’s win secured the Dutch a spot in the six-team league tournament held May 10-12.
Central returns to action Tuesday at Storm Lake, taking on Buena Vista University (15-12 overall, 7-6 conference) in a 3:30 p.m. league doubleheader.