Baseball: Ashton Pecher, Hall top St. Bede in conference opener

Red Devils get offense going 2nd time through order

Hall's Ashton Peacher delivers a pitch to St. Bede on Monday, March 27, 2023 at Kirby Park in Spring Valley.

SPRING VALLEY – Hall senior Ashton Pecher’s first start of the season did not go as he hoped as he allowed three runs in two-thirds of an inning.

His second start went much better.

In the Three Rivers Conference East Division opener Monday, Pecher threw five shutout innings, allowing two hits and striking out six batters with no walks to lead the Red Devils to a 6-1 victory over St. Bede at Kirby Park.

“My first start of the year wasn’t how I wanted it to go, but I knew we were playing our rivals and I just had to compete. That’s what I did,” Pecher said. “My curveball was there. I felt good with that. My fastball was pretty good, too.”

Pecher also helped the Red Devils get their offense going.

After Hall did not have a base runner through three innings, Mac Resetich led off the fourth with a bunt single.

Resetich then stole second and attempted to steal third, but Hall’s Kyler Lapp was called for batter interference, sending Lapp back to the dugout and Resetich back to second base.

Pecher followed with an RBI single to center field. He later scored on an RBI single by Riley Coble.

“We started off rough hitting, but we came around and got some runs,” Pecher said. “We knew we couldn’t watch strike one go by with fastballs, and we had to jump on the first pitch and that’s what we did. Mac led off with a bunt and from there it was just a rally.”

The Red Devils scored two runs in the fifth and two more in the sixth.

Hunter Meagher and Resetich started the fifth with back-to-back singles before Lapp ripped a two-run double to right-center field.

In the sixth, Payton Dye started a two-out rally with a single and Dom Galetti followed with a walk before Meagher delivered a two-run double to right field.

“We had some timely hitting out of the guys we expect in our lineup to do it,” Hall coach Tom Keegan said. “We need those guys to continue to produce.”

Meagher was 2 for 3 with two RBIs and a run, Resetich went 2 for 4 with two runs, Pecher was 1 for 3 with a run and an RBI and Lapp drove in a pair of runs.

After Pecher’s five innings, Dye finished the game for the Red Devils (3-0, 1-0 TRC East), allowing one run on two hits with five strikeouts and no walks.

“It’s nice [to start conference play with a win],” Keegan said. “It’s a long road, but it’s nice to get the first one, and then we just go from there.”

The Bruins threatened in the first inning as they got runners on second and third with two outs but couldn’t push a run across.

St. Bede did not get a runner past first base again until the fifth inning when Brendan Pillion reached second when his flyball was dropped in right-center field.

Luke Tunnell followed with an RBI single to center field before a strikeout ended the inning.

In the seventh, Nate Husser led off with a single, but the next three Bruins struck out to end the game.

Alex Ankiewicz took the loss for St. Bede (3-2, 0-1), allowing two earned runs on three hits with six strikeouts and one walk in 4 1/3 innings.

“We competed,” St. Bede coach Bill Booker said. “It was 0-0 in the fourth. It was a pretty good game. I thought Ankiewicz threw a real good game, but it’s still March 27, so he’s on his pitch count.

“We’ve got to have some better plate approaches toward the bottom of the order. We were a hit away from going up in the first inning. I thought we played pretty good defense today. Our kids battled.”