Billerbeck, Rebels hold off high-scoring Hudson, 3-1
July 15, 2011
GRUNDY CENTER - Hudson went in with the highest team batting average in all classes across the state of Iowa. Brady Billerbeck came out with his eighth win of the season. The Gladbrook-Reinbeck left-hander limited the Pirates to just four hits and the Rebels racked up their 12th straight win by eliminating Hudson, 3-1, in Tuesday's Class 2A District 9 semifinal baseball game at the George F. Wilhelm Sports Complex. Billerbeck struck out six and overcame two walks in the bottom of the seventh as Hudson (22-9) tried to rally. Alex Chilcote's RBI double got the Pirates on the board and put runners on second and third after back-to-back one-out walks, but Billerbeck (8-1) struck out the next batter and got a groundout to end the game. "In those kinds of games it comes down to whoever makes the first mistake, and we didn't lose our cool," said G-R head coach Jeff Charley. The Rebels (20-6) advance to Saturday's district finals against NICL West Division foe East Marshall, which knocked off conference champion West Marshall 12-1 in five innings. G-R won the regular season series 2-0 over the Mustangs, and on Tuesday they beat one of the most highly touted pitchers in the area. Hudson's Cale Henke (7-2) stood 10th in the state in strikeouts (99) entering the district semifinals, and he tacked on 15 more Ks in the loss to Gladbrook-Reinbeck. But wild pitches helped propel the Rebels' few baserunners around the diamond after both teams went scoreless for the first five frames. Logan Petersen singled and advanced to second on the left fielder's error to start the Rebels in the sixth. Parker Bolt struck out on a wild pitch, but the catcher's throw was wide of first, allowing Petersen to race around as the game's first run. Bolt later scored on a passed ball for a 2-0 G-R lead. Cobren Bird walked in the seventh and scored on Austyn Smith's double to make it 3-0, and Billerbeck and Co. withstood a Hudson offense batting a state-best .422. "We beat a good pitcher, jeepers," said Charley. "He's an oustanding pitcher. He throws pretty hard but he got us on some wild pitches, we didn't get frustrated and we hung in there and in the sixth and seventh we got a couple runs." Both teams finished with just four hits. Bolt was 2-for-4 to pace the Rebels, and the G-R defense did not commit an error.
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