Thursday’s inclement weather forced the postponement of the opener in the Reed/Reno High Desert League series. A day later, lingering soggy conditions on the Reed field forced school officials to move the game to Reno Friday. And that’s where the Huskies rolled to a 13-2 triumph over the Raiders.
Reed, which was the designated home team after the game’s venue was moved, got its lone bright spot in the bottom of the first. That’s when the Raiders pushed across a single score and grabbed their only lead of the conference clash.
Connor Cox reached safely for the Raiders after being hit by a pitch. He moved up when Eric Wilkinson dropped down a sacrifice bunt. Cox scored on a Derek Garcia RBI single.
The two teams traded zeros in the second inning but Reno grabbed the momentum in the top of the third thanks to a six-run rally. What hurt the Raiders is they helped out. Reno ‘s eighth and ninth-place hitters opened the Huskies’ rally by both reaching via Reed errors.
Austin Woods tied the game at 1-1 with an RBI single and Reno took a 2-1 lead on a Pat Gallagher double. Huskies cleanup hitter Trevor McElroy drew a walk to load the bases and Anthony Hascheff cleared them with a grand slam, capping the inning and lifting Reno into the 6-1 edge.
“Reno didn’t make any errors. They made the routine plays. Two plays we didn’t make were the difference. They changed the whole complexion of the game,” second-year Reed coach Nick Royle said. “They are so good fundamentally and they definitely capitalized on our mistakes. They don’t beat themselves and we did today.”
Reed did get a run back in the bottom of the third after Beau Tittensor doubled and came home following a pair of groundouts.
Leading 6-2, the Reno offense went right back to work in the top of inning four. The Huskies proceeded to tack on three more runs, blowing the game open.
Tyler McElroy singled and Nick Beitz doubled. Austin Wood plated McElroy on a sacrifice fly. Gallagher walked and then Trevor McElroy singled in two more runs.
“I thought we took advantage of their mistakes and then we drove in some runs,” veteran Reno coach Pete Savage said. “Reed’s a better team than what it showed. We just did a good job today. Reed’s a quality program and Nick’s a good young coach. Their program is in good hands.”
Reno ‘s starting pitcher, Garrett Winkelmaier cashed in with the 9-2 lead after three and a half innings. He shut Reed down from there, turning in four straight scoreless innings to close out the contest. Winkelmaier picked up the complete-game victory. He did allow the two runs on five Reed hits. He struck out two and did not give up a walk.
“He keeps the ball down and he had two pitches working today,” Savage said of his hurler. “We played good team defense behind him. I thought it was a good game for us. Garrett works hard between starts and that’s why he’s got good command.”
Reno added a run in the sixth and three more in the seventh to account for the final 11-run margin. Trevor McElroy and Hascheff laced run-scoring singles in the Reno seventh.
The Huskies battered Reed pitching for 17 hits in the one-sided win.
By playing the game Friday, Reed and Reno were able to avoid pushing it back into next week when it could have limited their pitching options for the following series. Still, Royle had mixed emotions about playing Friday.
“I’m glad we got it in to an extent,” Royle said. “But by moving the game to Reno we lose any home-field advantage. Reno will not come to Reed this year. Yes we were the home team, but Reno knows its field, the bounces and hops. We got it in and that’s good in that it helps both teams for next week, but we lost a home game and that hurts.”
With its win Friday, Reno improved to 20-2 overall and 10-0 in HDL play. Reed falls to 6-13 overall, 3-7 in league. The two teams meet again today in a twin bill at Reno that begins at 11 a.m.