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Blackcats produce with two outs to win opener

FREDERICKTOWN – With plentiful varsity experience spanning its lineup, the Fredericktown baseball team hopes to deliver stronger results in clutch situations this season.

The Blackcats were given numerous chances to test their mettle Wednesday after having their season opener postponed five days due to unplayable field conditions.

Fredericktown recorded eight runs when faced with two outs in an inning, and used a committee of four pitchers to defeat visiting St. Vincent 9-2.

Starting hurler Logan Winkelman homered and doubled while totaling three RBI, and fellow junior Noah Korokis finished 3-for-3 from the leadoff spot.

The Blackcats (1-0) seized control by pushing six runs across the plate with two outs just minutes after the Indians (0-1) nearly drew even in the top of the fifth.

Singles by Justin DeBeaux and Korokis started the emphatic surge, and St. Vincent pitcher Nick Lappe encountered an option to challenge Colton Rehkop with first base open.

Rehkop slapped an opposite-field, two-run single through the right side, extending the Fredericktown advantage to its original difference of 5-2.

Winkelman followed with a two-run shot that traveled beyond the left-center field wall and ended the outing of Lappe in favor of reliever Owen Light.

Logan Watson coaxed another walk after Clark Penuel drew a free pass, and Dylan Stafford extended the frame with an infield hit before Kenny Couch singled home two more.

Penuel – the third of four Blackcats to pitch in the contest – fielded a comebacker to start a double play in the St. Vincent sixth. Rekhop closed by working a perfect seventh.

The Indians trailed 3-0 in the top of the fifth inning, but capitalized on two walks from DeBeaux. Lappe strengthened the threat with his second single from the No. 9 spot.

Evan Clifton legged out an infield hit to make it 3-1, and John Wibbenmeyer drew a bases-loaded walk. Penuel unleashed a pitch to the backstop, but Rehkop retrieved it and cut down the lead runner on an extremely close play at home.

DeBeaux switched to the mound under unusual circumstances, and secured a called strikeout after inherited a full count from Winkelman with a runner on second.

Winkelman fanned five and scattered four hits over 3 2/3 scoreless innings in the win. The different leadoff batters reached safely against him, but to no avail for St. Vincent.

Isaak Starkey walked and scored for a 1-0 lead when an RBI double by Winkelman found the left-center gap in the opening frame.

Watson singled and headed home on a sacrifice fly as Couch tallied his third RBI in the second inning, and Rehkop narrowly guided an RBI double a pursuing center field in the third.

Winkelman operated under a strict pitch restriction with the idea of possibly conserving his availability. The Blackcats face Woodland on Thursday and host two more games on Saturday.

Rellergert singled twice, and also reached on an error for the Indians. Catcher Garrett Dobbelare caught two men attempting to steal second base.

Fredericktown junior Logan Winkelman makes a leaping throw to complete a double play as St. Vincent runner Matt Rellergert (19) slides into second base during sixth inning action on Wednesday.

Fredericktown junior Logan Winkelman makes a leaping throw to complete a double play as St. Vincent runner Matt Rellergert (19) slides into second base during sixth inning action on Wednesday.

Fredericktown senior Isaak Starkey (10) slides safely across home plate on an two-run single by Colton Rehkop in the fifth inning against St. Vincent on Wednesday.

Fredericktown senior Isaak Starkey (10) slides safely across home plate on an two-run single by Colton Rehkop in the fifth inning against St. Vincent on Wednesday.

Fredericktown senior Kenny Couch grounds a two-run single during fifth inning action on Wednesday against St. Vincent.

Fredericktown senior Kenny Couch grounds a two-run single during fifth inning action on Wednesday against St. Vincent.

Matt King is the sports editor for the Daily Journal. Contact him at mking@dailyjournalonine.com

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