Grenadiers rally past Rio in RSC tourney opener

By Randy Payton - For Ohio Valley Publishing

CHILLICOTHE, Ohio — Brody Tanksley had a two-run fourth inning double — one of five two-base hits for top-seeded Indiana University Southeast — helping the Grenadiers to a 5-3 win over the University of Rio Grande in the opening round of the 2022 River States Conference Baseball Championship, Thursday afternoon, at VA Memorial Stadium.

The Grenadiers improved to 36-13 with the win and will face No. 3 seed Indiana University Kokomo on Saturday at 3 p.m.

Rio Grande (23-31), the tourney’s No. 6 seed, will face fifth-seeded Oakland City University in an elimination game on Saturday at 11 a.m.

The tourney was originally scheduled to continue on Friday, but was pushed back a day due to the forecast for inclement weather in the area.

Rio Grande coughed up a 2-0 first inning lead and a 3-2 third inning advantage as the Grenadiers pushed across single markers in each of the first three innings before taking the lead for good on Tanksley’s fourth inning double.

The RedStorm placed just one baserunner in scoring position over the five innings when junior AJ Thomas (Pickerington, OH) was hit by a pitch to begin the eighth inning and stole second.

One out later, though, Thomas was picked off of second.

Hunter Kloke picked up the win for IU Southeast, allowing nine hits and three runs over seven innings. The left-hander fanned four.

Gavin Knust recorded the final four outs to record his second save.

Sophomore Trey Carter (Wheelersburg, OH) started and took the loss for Rio Grande, allowing six hits, four walks and five runs over four innings.

Sophomore Jakob Johnson (Pickerington, OH) finished 3-for-4 in the loss for the RedStorm, while Thomas and junior Gavin Lovesky (Willowbrook, IL) had two hits each. Thomas’ hit total included a double.

Sophomore Josh Wolfe (Hillsboro, OH) had two RBI for Rio.

Clay Woeste went 3-for-3 with two doubles and a run batted in for IU Southeast, while Trevor MacDonald finished 2-for-4 with a double and Marco Romero added a double to the winning effort.

By Randy Payton

For Ohio Valley Publishing

Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director for the University of Rio Grande.

Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director for the University of Rio Grande.