Wolves pound Chisholm, gear up for key games

by Tom Coombe

After a rare defensive breakdown, Ely’s high school baseball team, returned to previous form last Monday at Chisholm<BR><BR>Senior Josh Weckman was in command on the mound, while the Timberwolves also had good defense and timely hitting in a 13-2 rout of the Bluestreaks.<BR><BR>Ely, 9-2, bounced back from a pair of less than stellar outings the previous weekend, when they shaded Silver Bay 11-9 and suffered a 10-0 defeat at Hermantown.<BR><BR>“After the Hermantown game, we needed a good outing and we got it,” said Ely Head Coach Frank Ivancich. “We needed to get back on the winning track and gear up for some of our big AA games, and I thought we put everything together.”<BR><BR>The Timberwolves, who cracked the state rankings last week landing at the number 10 spot in AA, faced Virginia and Duluth Marshall over the weekend in pivotal Section 7AA seeding contests. Tuesday, they are at Mesabi East for another 7AA game.<BR><BR>Ely entered those matchups with a full head of steam, thanks to the scoring spree at Chisholm<BR><BR>Seniors Jeff Kotzian and Tony Carlson both had their first home runs of the season.<BR><BR>Kotzian’s three-run sixth-inning blast gave Ely the 10-run margin it needed to end the game.<BR><BR>Carlson’s two-run round-tripper capped a four-run second inning.<BR><BR>Senior Cory Lassi continued to swing a hot bat with a pair of doubles, while Weckman helped his cause at the plate with two runs batted in. <BR><BR>Ely was aided by seven free passes issued by Chisholm pitchers.<BR><BR>The Bluestreaks had single runs in the second and sixth innings, with Nick Kochevar launching a sixth-inning homer.<BR><BR>That was all Chisholm could muster against Weckman, who picked up his fifth win of the season in relatively easy fashion.<BR><BR>He scattered six hits and struck out eight Bluestreaks, including three in the final frame.<BR><BR>David Urbas scored three runs for the Wolves, with Lassi, Weckman, Moberly and Kotzian all crossing home plate twice.<BR><BR>Hermantown 10, Ely 0<BR><BR>The Hawks scored seven runs in the third, on just four hits, to break open the nonconference game.<BR><BR>Losing pitcher Tim Scott walked six batters and hit two, contributing to the Hawks’ offensive output.<BR><BR>Meanwhile, hard-throwing Mitch Petcoff kept the Wolves in check and led the two-time defending Section 7AA champions on the mound. <BR><BR>Petcoff allowed two hits, one by Urbas and the other by Scott and struck out four in the five inning game.<BR><BR>He also supported his own cause with a two-run single in the third.<BR><BR>Darrin Carlson singled and scored to put Hermantown ahead in the first, and that was it until the third, when six straight Hawks reached base.<BR><BR>Hermantown finished it with two runs in the sixth.<BR><BR>Carlson had three hits to pace Hermantown.<BR><BR>Ely 11, Silver Bay 9<BR><BR>The Wolves rallied in the seventh for a wild win on the North Shore.<BR><BR>Trailing 8-7, Ely plated four in the final frame to take the win.<BR><BR>Kai Bowen started the rally with a single and Aaron Thom doubled him home to tie it up.<BR><BR>Thom scored on Moberly’s single, and Scott added insurance with a two-run safety.<BR><BR>Ely then needed some defensive heroics in the bottom of the frame.<BR><BR>The Mariners scored once and had the tying run on base when Thom’s diving catch - on a ball hit by Jesse Downey - ended the game.<BR><BR>Weckman, the fourth Ely pitcher, got the save.<BR><BR>Moberly went one and one-third innings to get the win. Dusty Schaper started on the mound for Ely and Paul Starkovich worked two and two-thirds innings in relief.<BR><BR>At the plate, Scott had two hits and four RBI, while Bowen, Moberly and Urbas all added two hits.<BR><BR>B-squad action<BR><BR>Ely’s B-team is 7-2 on the season, including two wins in the May 1 Esko Tournament, a 9-2 win over BEST on May 4 and a 10-5 win at Silver Bay.<BR><BR>Tyler Willis got the win on the mound and Ernie Horvat had two hits against Silver Bay.<BR><BR>Nick Furnstahl was the winning pitcher and had a homer at the plate against BEST. Jay Olson had two hits and three RBI in that game.<BR><BR>Hermantown beat Ely’s B-team 13-3.