Kohawks Edge Beavers 4-3 in Opener of IIAC Baseball Tournament

Kohawks Edge Beavers 4-3 in Opener of IIAC Baseball Tournament

Eric LaRue pitched five strong innings, Bryce Rheault finished 3-for-5 with an RBI, but it was third-seed Coe College pushing across a two-out run in the bottom of the eighth inning to edge Buena Vista, 4-3, to begin play Thursday in the Iowa Conference Tournament inside of Veterans Memorial Stadium.

Rheault lined a single into right center in the seventh to tie the score at 3-3 before lining a first pitch into left center with two a runner on and two outs in the ninth as the Beavers tried to rally.  Coe made a pitching change following the hit as Peyton Renning got set to step in, but Renning grounded out to first to end the game.

Coe regained the lead in the eighth with two a two-out RBI single by Kevin Delaney after Nick Henrichs came on to relieve Clayton Christian.

The Kohawks jumped on the board with a run in the first before BVU came back and took its first lead of the game with an RBI single from Joe Rock and a run-scoring double from Porter Sartor.  The lead was short lived, however, as Coe came right back with a pair of runs in the home half.

LaRue scattered six hits and was charged with three runs over his five innings en route to a no-decision.  Christian was charged with the loss (0-1) after allowing a run on two hits in his 2.2 innings of work.  

BVU finished with eight hits in the contest which also included Rennings team-leading fifth triple of the year.

Buena Vista (14-22) will now face fourth-seed Loras in the first elimination game of the tournament tonight at 8:00pm.  The Duhawks were blanked by fifth-seed Luther, 7-0, in the other early game.