East hangs on to edge Greensburg

JD Rotert

After allowing only one baserunner the first four innings, Columbus East found itself getting out of big-time jams in the final three innings Saturday.

Greensburg left the bases loaded in the fifth, sixth and seventh, allowing the Olympians to hang on for a 3-2 baseball victory.

“We had some good performances on the mound,” East coach Jon Gratz said. “It was a good all-around game.”

The Olympians (3-7) scored all three of their runs in the fifth on a single by Evan Balzer, followed by a walk, two hit-by-pitches, a wild pitch, a fielder’s choice and an error.

Meanwhile, East freshman JD Rotert allowed only one hit over the first 5 1/3 innings. But after a pair of walks in the sixth, he was replaced by Kaden Arnholt, who hit a batter, but got out of the inning with only one run scoring.

The Pirates scored another run in the top of the seventh, but with the bases loaded and two out, Arnholt came through with a strikeout to end it.

Rotert and Arnholt combined on a four-hitter with seven strikeouts.

“I had a great team behind me, a lot of great fielders,” Rotert said. “All I did was, I made the other team put the ball in play and we got outs. I feel like I had pretty good stuff. I just couldn’t locate my curveball today, so I just had to pound the fastball.”

East managed just three hits, including a double by Jake Jones.

“I really liked our approach at the plate today,” Gratz said. “We didn’t get a lot of balls to fall. We had some solid line drives that just happened to be caught.”

The win was the second in three games this week for the Olympians. They also were leading Madison when that game was called because of rain, three outs away from becoming an official game.

“We’re starting to kind of put it together,” Gratz said. “Like I’ve been preaching to the guys, we’re trying to get 1 percent better every day, and we’re getting there.”