Waukesha, Wis.–It was a pitching rematch from last season’s regional final and the two returning all-conference pitchers didn’t disappoint.
In the conference opener for both teams, Kettle Moraine rode the strong pitching performance of senior Austin Finn to sneak past Charlie Walsh and Catholic Memorial, 3-2 at 5 Diamonds in Waukesha.
Finn went the distance for the Lasers, allowing just one earned run and striking out eight.
Kettle Moraine fell behind 1-0 in the first inning after an RBI double from Crusaders junior catcher Justin Dentici.
The Lasers responded in the second inning, playing small ball to score twice.
After senior shortstop Cory Ott reached on an error, sophomore third baseman Matt Melbye dropped down a beautiful bunt that was thrown away, advancing Ott to third.
Sophomore first baseman Robbie Dombrowski followed with a bunt single, after nobody covered first base from Memorial.
After a fielders’ choice at the plate gave CMH the first out of the inning, senior catcher Justin Yute roped an RBI single to left and junior second baseman Keith Koehn followed with an RBI groundout to put KM up 2-1.
The Lasers added to their lead in the third inning.
Finn led off with a triple and scored on an RBI double to right by Melbye.
CMH got a run back in the fourth on an error, but Finn was able to work out of the bases loaded jam with no further damage.
The Crusaders threatened again in the sixth with a runner at third and one out, but Finn got a strikeout and a groundout to get out of the inning.
The Lasers return home to Wales Community Park on Friday to host conference foe Waukesha North at 5:30 p.m.