Nelson, Defense Give Capra All-Stars 8-2 Win
Oct. 13, 2008
NORMAL, Ill. - Kyle Nelson allowed two hits in four shutout innings and received a huge boost from his defense as the Capra All-Stars rolled to an 8-2 win over the Bergman All-Stars in game three of the Redbird Falls Series at Duffy Bass Field Monday. The win gave the Capra All-Stars a 2-1 lead in the five game series.
Nelson walked four and struck out four and used defensive help from his teammates to strand six Bergman All-Stars' runners through four innings.
"I wanted to throw strikes," Nelson said of his pitching performance. "All our coaches want us to do is throw strikes, speed up the game and get our fielders involved. I did that today and got some huge outs. I got my defense involved."
In the bottom of the first, Nelson wriggled out of his own jam with runners on the corners and two outs. Facing Corey Maines in a scoreless game, Nelson caught Ben Ihde off first base to end the threat.
In the second inning, Nelson fanned Maines before giving up what appeared to be a single up the middle to Landinn Eckhardt. Capra All-Stars shortstop Collin Salzenstein snagged the ball behind second base, however, and spun the throw to first from the outfield grass for the out. Nelson walked Justin Rahn before striking out Travis Weldon to end the inning.
Meanwhile, the Capra All-Stars tagged Bergman All-Stars starter Ryan Camp with an unearned run in the top of the second inning and pushed across three more in the top of the third, including a bases loaded, ground-rule double by Mark Evans.
Evans, who missed a grand slam by the width of the warning track, also was clutch defensively in the third inning. With one out and runners on first and third, Evans scooped a sharply hit grounder to third base and started a 5-4-3, inning-ending double play.
"They were knocking on the door a few times today and we just answered right back with big defensive plays," Evans said. "We're a good defensive team, especially when we're on. If that can carry over to the season, we're going to be pretty good."
In the fourth inning, Nelson found himself in another predicament as the Capra All-Stars loaded the bases with two outs. Jon Dove hit a line drive up the middle but it was caught by an outstretched Mark Menaker.
The Capra All-Stars added three runs in the fifth inning and another in the top of the sixth to make it 8-0. The Bergman All-Stars scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the sixth but were unable to mount a comeback against Team Capra relievers Kenny Long and Jim Sajewich.
Long struck out three in two innings and surrendered the lone runs of the game, but was able to hold the lead. Sajewich closed the game for the Capra All-Stars with two strikeouts in a perfect seventh inning.
The Capra All-Stars got hits from eight different players and had five different players drive in runs. Evans finished 1-for-3 with two RBI while Gabe DeMarco, Evan Kohli and Menaker all had multi-hit games. Dove finished 1-for-3 with a pair of runs batted in for the Bergman All-Stars.
The Redbird Fall Series continues on Wednesday with first pitch scheduled for 4 p.m. at Duffy Bass Field. All five games of the series will be played regardless of the win-loss records of the teams.