Grey Ghosts end year with strong action

Drew Veskauf TimesNewspapers
IVC senior Jake Dismang keeps a Rock Island Alleman runner in check at first base in the May 28 regional semifinal game at the Ghost Yard.

A slow start for the IVC varsity baseball team may have been the case this year but the Grey Ghosts wrapped up the season hot in the field and at the plate.

In the post-season action, IVC defeated Dunlap 8-3 in the play-in game but fell to Rock Island Alleman in the regional semifinal game, 4-1, to end the season.

“There were a lot of good things to the end of the year and they finished strong,” coach Jerry Rashid said.

“I’m proud of the way they played. They could have laid down and died three games ago but they didn’t and that’s a good thing for our program and for our kids.”

IVC 8, Dunlap 3

The rain may have been an annoyance throughout the regional game with Dunlap May 26, but both teams battled through the wet conditions for the full seven innings.

Senior Ben Rashid was on the mound and earned the win with eight strikeouts.

“The rain came and made it tough, but I thought Ben did great through the rain,” Rashid said.

“(Ben’s) just a bull-dog type guy and he finished strong for us.”

The Eagles may have caught an early 1-0 lead after the second when a fly double to right put a runner home.

Another two runs were added to Dunlap’s score after the fifth off a passed ball and line drive to left for the second run.

“It was really exciting for the kids. They really stayed with it down 3-0. They fought hard and caught some breaks finally,” Jerry Rashid said.

The Grey Ghost offense came out in the top of the sixth with vengeance to put two runs on the board.

The bases were loaded after three consecutive walks when a balk on the Dunlap pitcher put pinch-runner Jack Ressler across home with Blake Strebel at the plate.

Strebel then made contact but was out at first giving enough time for Seth Smith to get home to close out the inning.

Dunlap had a scoring chance in the bottom of the half but left two runners stranded when Rashid struck out the final at bat.

In the big seventh inning for the Grey Ghosts, six additional runs were added to the board.

The bases were loaded when Jake Dismang knocked one to right for Jack Mellen to get home.

“We got a really good effort from the middle of our lineup. With Mitch (McIntyre) and JD and Seth and all the way down to the six hole. Our guys swung the bat well. They’re good hitters and they did a good job. I’m really happy for those guys,” Rashid said.

McIntyre was swinging when a wild pitch allowed Ben Rashid on third to score a run. McIntyre then connected to the shortstop when an error at second allowed two more runs and the lead.

With the bases loaded and two outs, a line to center gave enough time for McIntyre and Strebel to score the last runs of the game.

The Eagles stranded another two runners in the bottom of the seventh to close the game. 

Alleman 4, IVC 1

The Grey Ghosts then faced Rock Island Alleman in the semifinal game at the Ghost Yard May 28.

IVC faced Alleman at the end of its regular season May 20 and received a 9-1 loss. The Grey Ghosts were able to battle with the Pioneers this time around but came up short again for a 4-1 defeat.

The lone IVC run was scored early in the second inning. 

McIntyre crossed home from second when Reilly Owens knocked one to left. Two IVC batters were struckout to close the second.

“The first three innings were the best we played all year. We played well defensively and pitching. We got a run and did what we needed to do. It was just perfect,” Rashid said.

IVC went 3-up-3-down for the remainder of the game and could not get past the Alleman defense.

The Pioneers put their first two runs in after a line to center with the bases loaded in the third. The last run of the game was put in after an Alleman line to right put a runner home.

Jarod McElyea was on the mound and finished with three strikeouts.

“(McElyea) pitched well. He had some rough starts earlier this year and I was glad to see him have a good start to end the year,” Rashid said.