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By LARRY GOFFINET
TELL CITY—Mater Dei had three home runs and two doubles among its 13 hits as it slugged Tell City 14-7 in the Class 2A baseball sectional semifinals Friday.
“I told our boys that if we scored seven or eight runs we’re going to win the game,” said Tell City Coach Jason Wilkerson. “But we gave up too many leadoff walks and did too much pitching from behind in the count.
“They’re a quality team and they’re going to hit those pitches.”
Tell City took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning on a walk to Reese Miller and singles by Gant Miller and Austin Paulin.
But Mater Dei took the lead for good, 3-1, with the help of three walks in the second inning.
Two of the batters who walked scored and the third, Will LaRue, drove in a run with a bases-loaded walk.
Jake Fleming followed LaRue’s walk with a two-run single to right field.
The Wildcats brought out their heavy artillery after that.
Seth Kruse hit a solo homer over the left-field fence in the third inning.
They had five hits in a six-run fourth inning, including Ben Sellers’ solo homer over the right-field fence.
LaRue hit a grand slam in the sixth to put them up 14-6.
Tell City tried to rally in the seventh. Gant Miller led off with a triple to right and scored one out later on Reed Goffinet’s single to left.
Hunter Rowe followed with a double to left, putting runners on second and third.
But a strikeout and pop-up to the shortstop ended the game.
Tell City had rallied for five runs in the fifth, right after Mater Dei’s six-run inning.
Austin Paulin’s two-run hit off the top of the glove of the left fielder was the biggest blow of that inning.
Rowe and Spenser Beard also had RBI singles that inning, which also included three walks.
“I’m proud of the way the kids kept battling back,” said Wilkerson.
Gant Miller, Austin Paulin and Rowe each had two of Tell City’s nine hits.
Paulin drove in three runs.
Five batters had two hits apiece for the Wildcats. LaRue, their leadoff hitter, drove in five runs.
Rhett Baumeister pitched the first 3 1/3 innings for Tell City. He gave up six hits and four walks and struck out three.
After Sellers’ home run, Chris Schaefer made his 17th relief appearance in 26 games this season. But he gave up two singles and a double to the first three batters he faced.
Rowe pitched the last two innings for the Marksmen. He faced only three batters in the fifth, as he picked Fleming off base after a walk.
But the Wildcats also hit him hard in the sixth, as they had two singles and a walk before LaRue’s grand slam.
Tell City finished the season 15-11.