WENONA – Doing his best Jim Edmonds’ impersonation, Noah Nordstrom kept the Fieldcrest baseball squad ahead on April 22.
The sophomore’s grab in the outfield saved at least one and possibly two runs to help the Knights to a 4-2 win over Heart of Illinois Conference foe Lexington at the middle school.
With two runs already in, the Minutemen (3-10, 3-5) looked for more in the top of the fifth. With two runners aboard, Tyler Grimsley lofted a fly ball to center. After getting turned around, Nordstrom drove with his back to the field and toward the fence to make the catch for the third out and keep the Knights (10-5, 6-3) on top 3-2.
“He’s been our everyday center fielder,” said Fieldcrest coach Mark Brown. “He did not take the best route on it, but when he caught it, it was awesome. Nordstrom’s catch gave us confidence.”
In the bottom half of the fifth, Fieldcrest pushed across a run when Ryan Naas picked up his third hit, a two-out single to left, to plate Derek May, who walked. Naas singled to right in his first at-bat to drive in Landon Cook.
“I do not know if confidence is the word,” said Brown when asked if he had confidence the offense could record some add on runs. “You just never know in a given inning.”
Michael Morse (2-1), who had not pitched in over two weeks, allowed two runs on three hits over five. He walked three and struck out six. Cook was brought in to close it out, which he did, for the save.
In the fourth, Lexington had runners on second and third with one out, but Morse wiggled out of trouble with a pair of strikeouts.
According to Brown, he was not sure how Fieldcrest would react following the pasting they took at the hands of GCMS.
“To be honest, I did not know,” he admitted. “They have a tendency to have a short memory. I thought we would play up to our capabilities.”
Josh Hardman suffered the loss for the guests, as he permitted three runs on six hits in three and two-third innings of work. Andrew Olson and Trevor Keagle hit back-to-back run-scoring singles in the Lexington fifth to cut the margin to 3-2.