Matt Yde has been the mainstay of the Brainerd Warriors pitching staff this season.
The senior right-hander turned in another steady performance Monday, spinning a 5-hitter as the second-seeded Warriors beat No. 5 Sauk Rapids 5-1 Monday morning in the South Subsection 8, Class 3A baseball tournament at Adamson Field.
Yde walked only one and struck out six while permitting no earned runs. He threw just 95 pitches, 60 for strikes. Yde threw the first pitch for a strike to 16 of 21 batters.
"It seems like if you don't get to Matt in the first couple innings you're probably not going to get to him at all," Warriors coach Lowell Scearcy said. "He kind of breezed through the third through the fifth innings.
"It was Matt's seventh win. He has had quite an impressive year for us."
The Storm's right-hander John Larson pitched impressively in defeat. He yielded eight hits, just two after the third inning. The 6-foot-4 senior struck out four, walked two and gave up three earned runs.
"We knew we were going against one of the better pitchers in the area," Scearcy said. "He keeps you off-balance. He throws his curveball and split-finger fastball for strikes and has pretty good control. I was worried we would have trouble with him.
"Early in the game we hit the ball well. We didn't hit as well the last three innings. Going against a good pitcher you are always concerned. We hadn't seem him pitch since he was 16. We were not sure what we were running into."
The Warriors had to manufactured three of their five runs.
In the second Ty Adams singled, advanced to second on a sacrifice, to third on a wild pitch and scored on a throwing error.
In Brainerd's 3-run third Nathan Thomas walked and later scored on a wild pitch. Kevin Ericson, who walked, scored when catcher Pat Knafla's throw to Larson, who was covering the plate following the wild pitch, hit Thomas in the helmet and the ball rolled to the backstop.
Warriors left fielder Chris Macy was 3-for-3 with an RBI single in the first inning. Adams drove in the final Brainerd run with an RBI groundout in the third.
Sauk Rapids 000 001 0 1 5 3
Brainerd 113 000 x -- 5 8 1
Sauk Rapids -- Nate Larson and Pat Knafla; Brainerd -- Matt Yde and Kyle Berg. WP -- Yde (7-0). LP -- Larson. RBI -- SR-Jordan Lazer; B-Chris Macy, Ty Adams. SB -- B-Berg. Sac -- B-Rob Lien.
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