Penrod Outduels Vance, Wauseon Beats Evergreen 1-0
Wauseon’s Connor Penrod pitched seven scoreless innings and Evergreen’s Landen matched each goose egg until one out in the bottom of the seventh when Kolton DeGroff scored from third base on a long fly ball to centerfield off the bat of Clay Stump and the Indians beat the Vikings 1-0 in NWOAL action.
It was a brilliant pitching performance by both Penrod and Vance that ended with two errors sandwiched around a sacrifice bunt in the final inning. Penrod, a Bowling Green State University commit, allowed only three hits and had 11 strikeouts but also issued four walks and had to get himself out of several jams. “They had runners all night long. We didn’t seem to get that, but we worked out of jams and got the job done at the end,” said Penrod.
In the second inning the Vikings had two on with nobody out then watched Penrod strikeout the next three batters. With a leadoff double by Vance and a pair of walks, Evergreen loaded the bases with two out in the fourth but a routine flyout to center ended the threat.
Another leadoff double in the sixth, this one by RJ Shunk, and an error put Vikings at the corners with no one out but once again Penrod struck out the side and escaped any damage. “I still had second base open. All I knew is that I had to throw strikes,” said Penrod explaining his mindset. “If I just throw strikes and trust the guys behind me it’s all going to work out.”
Wauseon scored the game winner when DeGroff hit a ground ball to short and went all the way to second base when the throw went over the outstretched glove of the first baseman and deep into foul territory. Sam Kragula sacrificed DeGroff to third who then came home when Stump’s fly ball to deep center was dropped.
The win keeps Wauseon undefeated in the NWOAL at 4-0 and 8-4 overall. “We’re playing well this year,” commented Penrod who earlier this season threw a complete game shoutout against the Archbold Blue Streaks. “After a slow start we’re getting it rolling. We were 0-3 and now we’ve won seven out of our last eight.”
The loss drops Evergreen to 3-1 in the league and 7-4 on the season. Despite having to take the loss, Vance was virtually unhittable, allowing just one hit, a single, while striking out three and giving up two walks.
Pictured: Connor Penrod delivers for Wauseon