LaSalle-Peru walks away with win

Chris Steele
Eric Westerlund makes a leaping catch at the fence during Geneseo’s game against LaSalle-Peru.

The Geneseo baseball team finished a series sweep against Sterling, defeated Sherrard and started their Northern Illinois Big 12 Conference series against LaSalle-Peru. 

Geneseo at Sterling

The Maple Leafs scored six runs in the first two innings with two outs en route to a 12-0 victory in five innings over the Golden Warriors at Gartner Park on April 14.

Geneseo’s Marshall Rice gave an outstanding performance on the mound earning the win. 

He allowed just one hit over five innings during the mercy rule shortened game with five strike outs.   

Leading 6-0, Geneseo put together a big inning in the fourth scoring an additional six runs in the frame.

The Leafs’ Keaton Rice smacked two hits and drove in three runs.

Cole Hunzeker drove in three runs on a pair of singles for Geneseo. 

Bo Lindstrom laced a pair of doubles and finished with three hits and an RBI.

The Leafs’ Hunter DeSplinter tallied three singles, drove in two runs and notched a steal in the leadoff spot.

Jacob Pauley finished the game with a pair of hits including a double.

Geneseo’s Devin Haxby singled and stole a base, and Jacob VanDoren singled home a run for the Leafs. 

A pinch runner, Jordan Jackson crossed the plate three times in the game. 

Geneseo at Sherrard

The Maple Leafs scored three runs in the fifth inning to defeat the Tigers 3-1 in Sherrard on April 16.

After giving up a run in the bottom of the first inning, Geneseo’s pitching shut down Sherrard at the plate.

The Maple Leafs’ Jordan Anderson earned the win after shutting out Sherrard over the final three innings.

Anderson struck out three and held the Tigers without a hit while on the hill. 

The Leafs’ Pauley pitched two innings of one-hit ball, and Geneseo’s starter Lindstrom struck out five while allowing one run in two innings of work.     

In the fifth, Pauley led off the inning with a walk and stole second to get in scoring position.

The Leafs had runners on the corners after Sherrard misplayed Jackson’s sacrifice. 

With Lindstrom at the plate, Pauley scored on the double steal to tie the game.

Jackson would come home to score the go-ahead run on Lindstrom’s RBI single. 

After stealing second base, Lindstrom scored on an RBI single from Keaton Rice. 

Geneseo finished the game with four stolen bases against the Tigers. 

Rice finished with two singles, VanDoren smacked a double and Hunzeker hit a single.       

LaSalle-Peru at Geneseo

The tone of a baseball game can change in an instant.

After Geneseo had been in control most of the game, the Cavaliers’ John Rugen changed that feeling with a towering two-run home run in the sixth inning which took the air out of Richmond Hill Field.

LaSalle-Peru would go on to defeat Geneseo 13-9 in eight innings on April 18 in the first game of a three-game series against their NIB 12 conference foes.

The Cavaliers came back from a 7-2 deficit by grinding out every at bat and extending every inning. 

The result was LaSalle-Peru was able to draw 10 walks in the game.

Following Rugen’s home run in the sixth, LaSalle-Peru tied up the game at eight with the next three batters reaching base safely. 

Geneseo’s Dylan Pardoe made a diving catch to keep the game tied going into the bottom of the sixth.

After getting a 1-2-3 inning in the top of the seventh, Geneseo’s Cade Humphries raced to an infield single to lead off the inning. 

Pardoe subbed back into the game to run the bases and was caught stealing second.

DeSplinter drew a walk and was thrown out trying to get in scoring position. 

A fly out ended the inning following a Lindstrom single. 

“We’re an aggressive team,” Christensen said. “We just didn’t get the jumps. Credit goes to their catcher and second baseman they made the plays, but that gave them the momentum.”

The Cavaliers scored five runs in the eighth to put the game out of reach. 

In the bottom of the eighth, Geneseo’s Hunzeker hit a solo home run. 

The homer was Geneseo’s first run scored since the third inning.   

The Leafs’ Haxby drove in three runs on two hits, and Hunzeker finished with three hits and two RBIs. 

Lindstrom tallied three hits for Geneseo with an RBI. 

VanDoren finished the game with a RBI single and three walks. 

DeSplinter, Keaton Rice and Marshall Rice each notched a hit for the Leafs.   

Geneseo at LaSalle-Peru

The Leafs’  Westerlund threw a gem, and Geneseo evened up the series with LaSalle-Peru at a game apiece.  

The Leafs defeated the Cavaliers 6-2 at  Veterans Park  on April 19.

Westerlund earned the win on the mound, pitching a complete game allowing two runs.  

Haxby keyed the Geneseo offense hitting a three-run triple in the third inning.

The Leafs finished the frame with five runs on the board.  

Geneseo’s Keaton Rice finished with a pair of hits including a double.  

At shortstop, DeSplinter was excellent in the field turning a pair of double plays and converting on all 11 chances defensively in the game.  

LaSalle-Peru committed five errors in the game.  

Hunzeker and Pardoe each notched a single, and Lindstrom hit a single and swiped a bag.  

Geneseo improves their record to 9-3 this season and 4-1 in the NIB 12 Conference, while LaSalle-Peru falls to 9-4, 1-1 in conference.

Geneseo’s next game will be on the road at Rochelle on Monday, April 25 starting at 4:30 p.m.

Pack the Park/Autograph Night April 26

The Maple Leafs’ baseball team invites the community and youth players to come Park the Park for Geneseo’s game at Richmond Hill on Tuesday April 26 at 4:30 p.m. Youth players will be celebrate for their support prior to the game. Following Geneseo’s NIB 12 Conference game against Rochelle, Leafs’ players will be autographing team posters.