Sometimes it’s the little guys that provide the punch.
That was the case Monday afternoon as freshman Chase McKague ended the extra-inning contest with the New Haven Shamrocks, sending Bearcats’ fans home happy with a 9-8 win.
McKague’s single in the bottom of the 8th scored the winning run. It was his second hit and third run batted in for the game.
Head Coach Wayland McKague’s club had little time to savor the victory; Hermann was scheduled to host the Linn Wildcats yesterday afternoon in a non-conference matchup.
The New Haven contest, also, was not a Four Rivers Conference game. The league game, set back on April 3, was rained out and has yet to be rescheduled.
Chase McKague, normally an infielder, was playing left field Monday and batting second. Leadoff hitter Chase Racherbaumer also had a big game — going 3-for-5 on the day with 2 runs scored and an RBI of his own. The five hits collected by Racherbaumer and McKague were half of the Bearcat’s offensive output — 10 hits, including 5 doubles.
The weather was nice Monday, but it was messy on the field — both teams committed 8 errors (5 by New Haven, 3 by Hermann).
Senior starter Kody Hackmann lasted only 1 1/3 innings before giving way to Chet Moeckli. He went 2 2/3 before handing the ball to Aaron Overkamp for the final 4 innings of work and picked up the win.
Overkamp, normally the ‘Cats’ third baseman, struck out 5 and walked 1 while facing 18 batters.
New Haven jumped on Hermann in the 2nd frame, scoring a single run, and added to that in the next inning by scoring 2.
The visiting Shamrocks compounded the Bearcats’ problems in the top of the 4th inning, picking up another run for what seemed to be a comfortable 4-0 lead.
But in the bottom of the 4th, Racherbaqumer led off with a double, went to third base on a wild pitch and scored on McKague’s grounder to second base.
Two hitters later, Chet Moeckli reached on an error, stole second base and scored on Trent Anderson’s single to cut New Haven’s lead to 4-2.
After holding New Haven scoreless in the top of the 5th, Hermann battlers unloaded in the home half of the frame. Back-to-back-to-back doubles were posted by Hunter Scheidegger, Trent Oberg and Overkamp. All that was followed by a single from Racherbaumer.
By the time the third out was recorded, Hermann had pushed across 5 run for a 7-4 lead.
New Haven came back in the top of the 6 with 3 runs to tie up the game.
A scoreless 7th inning sent the contest into extra inning knotted at 7-7.
In the top of the 8th, New Haven took the lead 8-7 after a one-out single and a two-out double. But the Shamrock hitter rounded second base too much and was thrown out by McKague for the final out.
Fitting, perhaps that the freshman leftfielder who ended New Haven’s rally would step to the plate in the bottom of the inning and deliver what would be the third consecutive base hit to drive in the second — and winning — run of the inning.
Hermann is scheduled to host the St. Clair Bulldogs tomorrow afternoon at Dick Ochsner Ball Field.