Huskies emerge from early hole to power past Bluejays

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Perry second baseman Adan Medina fires to first base after forcing Winterset's Daniel Brookhart in the second inning of their RRC game Wednesday.

Perry was off to a fast start in Wednesday’s regular season and Raccoon River Conference finale with visiting Winterset, but their advantage had hardly been established when it disappeared as the Huskies rolled to a 12-2 win.

Seniors Alex Long and Kade VanKirk were honored before the game, with VanKirk immediately involved in the action in Perry’s first at-bat.

He led off the bottom of the first with a walk, then raced to third when Kyle Nevitt yanked a double to the fence in right field. Janier Puente’s single through the left side allowed VanKirk to trot home and Nevitt to take third base.

Justin Stammer came on at first base as a courtesy runner for Puente and was targeted for a pick-off throw from Huskies catcher Colby Van Pelt, who threw the ball into right field. Stammer scampered to second as Nevitt scored, but three quick outs limited the damage, leaving Perry with a 2-0 lead.

Perry junior Janier Puente fires a first-inning pitch against Winterset Wednesday as first baseman Brandon Kenyon looks on.
Perry junior Janier Puente fires a first-inning pitch against Winterset Wednesday as first baseman Brandon Kenyon looks on.

A walk, hit batsman, fielder’s choice and a Conner Morris single scored Winterset’s first run and put two Huskies on base in the top of the second. Nick Nelson doubled to right field, advancing to third when the cut-off throw was off-target, allowing both runners to score.

Left-handed hitting Parker Klimesh followed by swinging at, and somehow connecting, on a pitch at his shoulders. The result was a two-run home run to right as the guests grabbed a 5-2 lead.

A walk, two-out single, hit batsman and a second two-out single plated three more Winterset runs in the third as the lead grew to 8-2.

That chased Perry starter Puente for Alexis Garrido, who struck out one and yielded two hits while keeping the visitors off the scoreboard in the fourth and fifth innings.

Perry senior Kade Van Kirk rounds second base on his way to third on a Kyle Nevitt double against Winterset Wednesday.
Perry senior Kade Van Kirk rounds second base on his way to third on a Kyle Nevitt double against Winterset Wednesday.

Winterset starter Jack Barker made sure their would be no serious challenge to the lead. After Puente had singled in the first inning, Barker had allowed only a one-out walk to Nevitt in the third inning while setting down 15-of-16 Bluejay batters entering the sixth frame.

Long relieved Garrido for the top of the sixth and was immediately greeted by solo home runs from Klimesh and from Van Pelt. Klimesh had entered the game with two home runs on the season before going deep twice at Progressive Field.

Barker set down the first two batter in the Perry sixth before Adan Medina doubled off the base of the fence in straightaway center, but a pop out left him stranded.

A walk, a Nelson double and a two-run outfield error with two outs allowed the final two runs of the game to score for Winterset, with Barker tossing a 1-2-3 seventh to end the contest.

Barker allowed two runs (one earned) on just three hits and two walks in seven innings. He struck out two and retired 21 of the final 23 batters he faced.

Alex Long (left) stands with his grandfather, Perry skipper Mike Long, and with his fellow senior Kade Van Kirk after the two were honored before the final home game of their prep career Wednesday.
Alex Long (left) stands with his grandfather, Perry skipper Mike Long, and with his fellow senior Kade Van Kirk after the two were honored before the final home game of their prep career Wednesday.

Puente was handed the loss after surrendering eight runs on six hits, two hit batters and two walks in three innings on the hill. He struck out two, with Long yielding four runs (two earned) on three hits and two walks in two innings.

Winterset finishes the regular season 18-12 overall and 7-7 in RRC play while Perry stands at 11-19 and 5-9.

Perry will play host DC-G in Dallas Center Friday after ADM and Carlisle battle at 5 p.m. in 3A District 14 action. The winners meet at 7 p.m. Monday in Dallas Center, with the Substate 7 Final slated for 7 p.m. Wednesday at Saydel.

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