Centerville -- One year after Indian Hills knocked off Iowa Western to take the Region XI postseason tournament, the Reivers got some revenge by ending IHCC's season with a 6-1 victory at Pat Daugherty Field on Saturday. The Falcons had battled back after a disappointing opening-game loss to Marshalltown to earn a spot opposite the Reivers in the title game. But they were outhit, 14-3, by Iowa Western and handcuffed by the Reivers' Sean Chandler, who struck out 14 IHCC hitters in eight innings.
The tourney got off to a rocky start for Indian Hills -- the Falcons' early 2-1 lead disappearing when Marshalltown broke through with eight runs in innings 3-6 to post a 10-5 win. Indian Hills didn't help their chances by committing five errors. Ryan Humeniuk led the offense with three hits and Jay Hester and Zachary Fascia each had two. Fascia knocked in two runs and Justin King scored a pair. Starter DJ DePiero lasted only 3 2/3 innings with Caleb Miley going the rest of the way. Miley didn't allow an earned run in his 5 1/3 innings of work.
The Falcons came back with a vengeance later on Friday, walloping Southwestern, 15-2, cementing the blowout with a seven-run 6th inning. IHCC only had eight hits but took advantage of eight walks and a handful of SWCC errors to keep their season alive. Jameson Hart and Hunter Capps each had two-hit games. Hester and Declan Buckle scored three runs apiece and Humeniuk, Hart and Capps scored two each. Humeniuk, Fascia and Christian Pena all knocked in two runs. Yasiel Valdez permitted only two hits to gain the victory, striking out five.
Indian Hills was able to avenge their loss to Marshalltown the day before by beating the Tigers, 9-4, Saturday. The winners snapped a 3-3 tie with three runs in the 7th inning and tacked on three more in the 8th. Pena had three of the IHCC hits and Humeniuk and Hart had a couple. Hart drove in three runs. Brett Kauzlarich made only his 3rd start of the season and notched his 3rd win, going six innings. The freshman allowed seven hits and three earned runs with four Ks. Corey Jackson finished with three innings of one-run pitching.
Iowa Western's Chandler was too much for the IHCC bats in the championship game, however. The Falcons managed only singles by Hester, Fascia and Humeniuk, whose sacrifice fly accounted for the lone Indian Hills run that cut the deficit to 2-1 in the 4th inning. Rodny Valdes threw 5 2/3 innings as the IHCC starter with Jordan Bahnuk going 3 1/3 frames in relief.
The loss ended the IHCC season with a 36-22 record. A talented sophomore class included a dozen players who were part of 77 wins over the past two years.