The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio


May 16, 2013

Grand Valley gashed by Garfield

Mustangs eliminated in D-III baseball

ORWELL — There is the good, the bad and the ugly.

Well, actually Grand Valley baseball coach Russ Bell would be the first to admit that the Mustangs sectional final game against Garfield featured, little good, a lot of bad and a whole lot more of the ugly as the G-Men (12-13) defeated the Mustangs (16-7, 14-3 NAC) 10-2 in a Division III sectional championship game at GV.

“The best thing about this is we still play one more game tomorrow,” Bell said. “If we win we win a share of the conference title. I do feel bad for our seniors though, because they were really looking forward to this tournament. We’ve played well most of the season. But they (Garfield) swung the bats well and took advantage of our mistakes.”

The Mustangs defense committed seven errors, leading to four unearned runs being scored.

“Unfortunately, we let things kind of snowball,” Bell said. “That’s been an issue for us this year. We’ve had a lot of one or two error games or no error games. But then we’ve had a few where we make three or four and we can’t stem the tide.”

The tide started rolling in the first inning for Garfield. Tim Schwan led off the game by reaching on an error. Then Michael Schuster hit a pop-up into the gusty wind that the Mustangs infield let drop. Two batters later, Garfield’s starting pitcher Nick Kaiser lined a single to left field to score a pair of runs.

In the second inning Schwan got his first of two hits on the afternoon with a double to right field to score a run. Schwan scored on an error off the bat of Schuster. Schuster then came home on an RBI single by Nick Jurcevic to put Garfield up, 5-0.

Throughout the game every time Grand Valley made a mistake, the G-Men took advantage.

“That’s something we’ve talked about a lot this year,” Garfield coach Beau Norton said. “With a young team like we have, it seems that’s just as apt to happen to us. When you have a young squad, you get down early and you don’t have those seniors to provide the leadership that’s been there before that’s come back in those types of games. We wanted to get out early, score some runs, and put some pressure on their defense.”

Garfield scored again in the fourth inning with the help of a Grand Valley mishap. With one out Schwan hit his second double of the game. He moved to third on a throwing error and came home on a sacrifice fly to center by Chase Chapman.

Meanwhile as the Grand Valley defense struggled, Garfield played flawlessly. Jurcevic gobbled up everything hit his way at shortstop. In the bottom of the fourth, centerfielder Travis Patterson made a great running catch in left center to take extra bases away from Nathan Wengard.

“It’s key for us to make plays behind our pitchers,” Norton said. “As good as Nick Kaiser and Tim Schwan are pitching wise; they’re not going to strike out 13 or 14 guys a game. For Travis to run that ball down in the gap was huge. He has tremendous speed and is a senior leader. When Jurcevic is making plays at short it gives our pitchers confidence to throw more strikes and challenge hitters.”

Grand Valley threatened in the third inning when they loaded the bases on a pair of walks and a single by Josh Kovats. Kaiser however got Stanley Sirrine on a fly ball to right to end the threat.

Garfield added two more runs in the fifth with the help of three more Mustang errors. Then they scored two more in the sixth as Kaiser had an RBI double driving in his third run of the game.

Grand Valley got on the board in the sixth when Sirrine walked and later scored on an RBI single from Matt Moodt.

The Mustangs scored their second run in the seventh when Tim Steed singled and scored on an RBI ground-out by Sirrine.

Wengard took the loss on the mound for the Mustangs as he worked five innings allowing five earned runs on five hits while striking out 7 and walking two plus a hit batter.

Kaiser got the win for Garfield going 51⁄3 innings allowing a run on three hits. He recorded five strikeouts and walked three.

The G-Men return home to take on Windham tomorrow before advancing to the district tournament next week. Grand Valley will play their final game of the season today when they host Southington.

“I had to remind the team that there’s a good chance we’ll play that game,” Bell said. “Hopefully we can put this one behind us and end the season the right way, end it a way that’s a little more indicative of how we’ve played this year.”

Shaffer is a freelance writer from Ashtabula.

Text Only
  • Olivia In transition

    Pymatuning Valley graduate Olivia Holt had a distinct reason she chose to play basketball for Mount Union.
    “They do have tradition,” Holt, the daughter of Gus and Michelle Holt, said. “I’m from PV. We had a tradition of winning and working hard there. I wanted to go somewhere that tradition mattered. I knew I was going to get better by coming here.”

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Don A Don McCormack column: Spring has sprung one big leak

    Paying a Wednesday morning visit to the variety store...

    Think spring?
    If this, um, err, uh... spring... feels a bit unusual for high school baseball and softball teams in Northeast Ohio, it is, to a point.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Scholastic Statistics:

    St. John 4, Euclid 1
    at Pine Lake

    April 16, 2014

  • tennis Scholastic Schedule:


    PV at Ledgemont (4:30)
    North at Geneva (4:30)
    Riverside at Chardon (4:30)
    Jefferson at Lakeview (5)

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Luke Baldwin Mustang to a Quaker

    As a junior, Grand Valley’s Luke Baldwin got a shot to play linebacker for the Mustangs because of an injury to a starter.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Don A Don McCormack column: Kids’ stuff but, boy, was it a blast!

    I have no idea why I thought of this, just now, but I did.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Scholastic Statistics:

    Chalker 4, Grand Valley 3
    at Chalker

    April 15, 2014

  • Megan Stech Scholastic Schedule:


    Geneva at Conneaut (4:30)
    Grand Valley at Windham (4:30)
    Edgewood at Niles (5)
    Maplewood at PV (4:30)
    Perry at West Geauga (4:30)
    Jefferson at Hubbard (5)

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • ACBF POY Hoops celebration

    The Conneaut Human Resources Center was the place to be for local basketball aficionados on Sunday afternoon.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • ACBF HOF HOFers very appreciative

    Members of the Star Beacon All-Ashtabula County teams had a rare chance to listen to the stories of the players who came before them. Hearing the Ashtabula County Basketball Foundation Hall of Fame inductees speak at the 2014 Awards Dinner at the Conneaut Human Resources Center on Sunday put their careers in perspective.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

Sports Week in Review April 7-12
Spring Sports Practice in Ashtabula County
2014 AP BB Tourney Top 25
2014 AP BB Tourney Scoreboard
2014 AP BB Tourney News
2014 AP BB Tourney Photos
Star Beacon-Ed Batanian Senior Classic
Girls Regional Basketball Action
Week of Champions
Sports Week in Review February 21, 22
Grand Valley at Edgewood Boys Basketball
Sports Week in Review Feb. 3 to 8
Sports Week in Review January 30 to Feb. 1
Sports Week in Review January 13-18
Sports Week in Review January 10 and 11
Sports Video Archive
House Ads
AP Video