A two hour rain delay Saturday morning was unable to put a damper on Tradition Mortgage Baxter in their quest for a Cal Ripken World Series berth.
Baxter reached the 10-run rule after four innings to clinch a 12-1 victory over Lamar, Colo., in the first round of the Midwest Plains Regional tournament.
Baxter jumped out quickly to a 6-0 lead in the top of the first inning with plenty of help from Lamar starting pitcher Kenny Dellamaestra. Baxter was able to put together the six-run inning with only one hit, a sure sign of trouble for Lamar.
Dellamaestra walked five of the first six batters in the inning, all of them translating into runs. Drew Sannes, the sixth run of the inning, reached base on a Lamar error.
Things didn't get any easier for Dellamaestra in the second inning. Unable to get in any sort of a groove, Dellamaestra walked Chris Pohlkamp for the second time in the game.
Three consecutive wild pitches to Gerritt Garberich during the next at-bat brought Pohlkamp around the diamond to score.
Lamar manager Luis Ortiz Sr. had seen enough and replaced Dellamaestra with center-fielder Jordan Jara. Lamar's change of pitchers did not seem to affect the Baxter bats, as they plated five more runs against Jara in the remaining three innings.
The Lamar offense was as dismal as their defense, reaching base only four times with two singles and two walks.
Sannes and Griffin Campbell split time on the mound for Baxter, each pitching two innings. Sannes struck out four batters and walked one in his two shutout innings. Campbell allowed one run in two innings.
Baxter stretched their lead to 12-1 in the top of the fourth inning, eclipsing the 10-run rule mark.
Campbell shut the door on the Colorado team by striking out the final two batters of the ballgame after forcing a ground-out.
Baxter catcher Kyle Helmberger was awarded Player of the Game for his impressive performance. Along with Helmberger's responsibilities behind the plate, he went 3-for-3 with an RBI and two stolen bases.
Second baseman Cole Smith was also a key offensive contributor, going 2-3 with three RBI.
Baxter 12 9 0
Lamar, Colorado 1 2 1
WP -- Drew Sannes. LP -- Kenny Dellamaestra.
3B -- Bax-Chris Pohlkamp, Thomas Stoxen, Griffin Campbell. SB -- Bax-Helmberger 2. RBI -- Bax-Grant Reuer, Sannes 2, Stoxen, Kyle Helmberger, Chris Pohlkamp, Keegan Kennedy, Cole Smith 3; Lamar-Dellamaestra.
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