Sat May 26, 2012
By Matt Wallisa
The stage was set.
No. 2 Moeller and No. 16 Elder with a packed house at Marge Schott Stadium on the campus of the University of Cincinnati.
Elder struck early scoring two runs in the top half of the 1st off Moeller senior lefty John Tanner (OU football recruit). Tanner walked Elder leadoff man Anthony Asalon (Indianapolis recruit). A fielders choice advanced Asalon to second base., and David Haley followed with a double to put Elder on the board. Following Haley, Elder's Jimmy White would stay hot and hit an RBI single to increase the lead to 2-0.
Moeller answered back with a run of their own in the bottom of the first. Unsigned senior Ryan LeFevers forced a walk off Elder junior starter Nick Beard. Senior second baseman Ty Amann (OU recruit) singled to advance LeFevers to third. Junior Spencer Iacavone produced a sac-fly to cut the deficit in half.
The Crusaders responded once again in the bottom half of the 2nd inning.
Beard walked Brad Macciocchi (WSU recruit), and senior Nick Edwards (Ashland recruit) to make it first and second for Moeller. Junior catcher Cameron Whitehead executed a sacrifice bunt to move runners into scoring position. Sophomore Riley Mahan delivered a triple to clear the bases and put Moeller up 3-2.
Mahan's triple ended the day for Beard as Elder called upon senior Zack Coon in relief. Beard lasted one and a third innings. His fastball sat at 83 mph and his curve registered at 69 mph.
In the bottom half of the their, Moeller struck again. Senior Jordan Simpson lead off with triple, and Macciocchi single to make the score 4-2 in Moeller's favor.
Once again, Elder turned to the bullpen as Coon exited the game. The senior only lasted one and a third of an inning while using an 81-82 mph fastball with a 71 mph curveball.
As Coon exited the game, Elder called on junior right-hander Joe Ramstetter, who used an 84 mph fastball and 76 mph curveball, to escape to the inning.
Elder responded in the top of the 4th with two runs to draw it even.
Senior Dewey Freidel and Tyler Trame strung together consecutive singles. Junior Joe Ramstetter followed with a big, RBI double to plate both runs and force Moeller to make a call to the bullpen.
With Tanner's day complete, Moeller turned the ball over to senior Phillip Diehl (Evansville recruit), who displayed an 84 mph fastball and 72 mph curveball.
Moeller responded in the bottom half of the 4th as the middle of their order came to plate. Spencer Iacavone lead off with a walk and Zach Shannon (OSU recruit) doubled off the left-field wall to score Iacavone.
After a scoreless fifth inning, Moeller added to their lead in the 6th. LeFevers lead off with his third walk off the day, and promptly stole second base and advanced to third on a pass ball. Amann followed with a walk to put runners at first and third. With Ramstetter lacking effective command, Elder made another call to the bullpen for senior Andrew Crofton, the fourth pitcher of the day.
With a 76 mph fastball, Crofton allowed a sacrifice fly to Iacavone to put Moeller in front 6-4.
In the top of the seventh, Diehl shut down Elder and punched Moeller's ticket for an appearance in the Division I State Final Four on Thursday in Columbus.