Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

Wolves overtake Grizzlies in 7th

Patrick Slack
Posted 4/26/17

FIELD TWP - Trailing heading into its final at bat, Ely staged a five-run seventh-inning comeback to edge host North Woods 5-1 on Tuesday.

Playing in cold conditions, neither team’s starting …

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Wolves overtake Grizzlies in 7th

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FIELD TWP - Trailing heading into its final at bat, Ely staged a five-run seventh-inning comeback to edge host North Woods 5-1 on Tuesday.

Playing in cold conditions, neither team’s starting pitcher would allow the opposing side’s bats to heat up, with no score through five innings.

North Woods was the first to break through in the bottom of the sixth inning, as junior Matthew Schultz scored on a sacrifice fly to put the Grizzlies ahead 1-0.

Ely manufactured a clutch rally in the top of the seventh, however, utilizing a hit and five walks to plate five runs and earn the win.

Ely sophomore starting pitcher Trevor Mattson threw five shutout innings, allowing just three hits and one walk while striking out four.

Freshman Bryce Longwell worked the sixth and recorded the win in relief, with junior Gage Merhar closing the door in the seventh.

Senior Mark Killoran, junior Thomas Montana, and Merhar picked up Ely’s three hits.

Junior Tate Olson pitched six innings for North Woods, striking out 10.

“Tate pitched fantastic,” North Woods head coach Jeff Chaulklin said. “From last year to this year it’s night and day. He has just improved so much with his control. It’s very, very nice to see.”

The Grizzlies had to pull Olson due to pitch count rules for the seventh, with the Wolves capitalizing.

“Ely took advantage of it and beat us,” Chaulklin said. “It was a very good baseball game. Both teams made some really good defensive plays.”

North Woods rolled to an 11-0 shutout at Carlton on Saturday.

Olson was dominant again, delivering a two-hitter and striking out six.

“I thought we played fantastic,” Chaulklin said. “Again Tate pitched fantastic.”

The Grizzlies fell 9-8 in a back-and-forth game late last Tuesday at Littlefork-Big Falls.

“It was another super cold game,” Chaulkin said. “Both teams hit the ball well. It basically came down to we were playing catch up the whole game.”

North Woods managed to tie the score in the top of the seventh, but LFBF tallied the game-winning run in the bottom of the inning.

“By far (LFBF) is way better than they’ve ever been,” Chaulkin said.

Ely encountered a pair of aces from teams that qualified for state a year ago over the weekend, falling 8-0 at Hinckley-Finlayson on Friday and 10-0 at Legacy Christian Academy on Saturday.

Merhar picked up the Wolves’ lone hit against Hinckley-Finlayson, with Killoran hitting a double and Montana collecting a single against Legacy Christian.

“We played two teams that most likely are going to be back at state,” Ely head coach Frank Ivancich said. “We faced two very hard throwers. We got a little taste of what it is going to take and what we hopefully want to strive for in the future. It was a great experience for our kids.”

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