Friday, July 21, 2017
Thank you for following Metro Sports Report....
Please update your Flash Player to view content.
* Contact Metro Sports Report *
Jim Ecker, President & Editor

Iowa Valley League

Czerwiec, Bell propel Fairfax

The hotter it is, the better Fairfax's Austin Czerwiec seems to pitch.

And it would have been hard to be any sharper that Czerwiec was during  Sunday's Iowa Valley League contest against Red Top.

"I love the heat," the former Mount Mercy and Muscatine High School  standout said Sunday after he allowed just one hit in a 7-0 win over  the defending IVL champions at Herkleman Field on the Kennedy High  School campus. "It helps keep my arm nice and relaxed and I don't  have to worry about it tightening up at all."

Fairfax forfeited the second game because they did not have an umpire available. Both teams are now 3-1.

Czerwiec allowed a single to lead-off hitter Cal Clark in the first  inning and little else the rest of the way. He struck out nine, walked  one and hit another. He was able to keep Red Top's hitters off balance  with his variety of deliveries.

"I had my curveball working, my slider working and I was locating my  fastball well," he said. "If I have all my pitches working, it seems  like everything else is working too."



Pauli can't get enough baseball

NORWAY - There is no such thing as too much baseball for Casey Pauli.

If the former Kirkwood and Wartburg infielder doesn’t get his fill of the game as an assistant coach for defending 4A champion Cedar Rapids Prairie or as the coach for his 6-year-old son Caden’s team, there is always his playing career to fill the void.

The 33-year-old Pauli suited up for another season of Iowa Valley League baseball on Sunday, helping Red Top salvage a doubleheader split with Norway with a 15-10 win in Game 2.

“There’s never too much baseball,” Pauli said. “It doesn’t get old, I just love being around the game in any way I can.”

Baseball has been a big part of his life for as long as Pauli can remember. For a decade and a half, the Iowa Valley League has helped feed Pauli’s love for baseball.

He started playing in the league in 2002 and now serves as a sort of player/coach for Red Top.

“I still get to play a little bit but I’m moving more into the coaching side, if I can still hang with these young bucks that’s all right,” he said. “It’s just fun to still be out here playing the best game.”



Bell helps Fairfax sweep IVL twinbill

WALFORD - Cody Bell hit two home runs and picked up the victory in Game 2 as Fairfax swept Walford, 11-0 and 11-1, on Opening Day in the Iowa Valley League Sunday in Walford.

Bell and Sammy Lizarraga belted two-run homers in the first game. Tyler Dralle, Steve Jensen and Alex Hayden had two hits for Fairfax, which exploded for eight runs in the fifth inning.

Austin Czerwiez allowed only one hit in five innings in the opener for Fairfax.

Bell socked another home run in the second game and was named the Iowa  Valley League Player of the Week for his overall performance as a hitter and pitcher.



Iowa Valley League starts Sunday

The Iowa Valley League season will begin this Sunday, May 28 with doubleheaders at Norway, Watkins and Walford.

The Metro Sports Report will be providing extensive coverage again this season.

The season runs through July 30 and will be followed by the annual IABA state tournament that runs two weeks in August.

Six-time defending IVL champion Red Top, which also claimed the IABA state title in 2016, will again be joined in the league by teams from Fairfax, Norway, Walford, Watkins and Williamsburg.

Most of the the games are played as Sunday doubleheaders. There also are also Saturday twinbills planned for June 10 when Walford hosts Norway and the annual holiday doubleheader on July 8 with Norway playing at Watkins.



Kass, Rettenmeier honored by IVL

Billy Kass and Ben Rettenmeier have received the top honors in the Iowa Valley League for the 2016 baseball season after helping Red Top win the league and state titles.

Kass was named the MVP in the league and Rettenmeier was saluted as the Oustanding Pitcher.

Kass, a center fielder, collected five doubles, three home runs and 12 RBIs as Red Top claimed the IVL title for the fifth straight year. Rettenmeier excelled for Red Top as a starter and relief pitcher, compiling a 3-0 record and four saves. Rettenmeier did not allow a run in 26 innings.

Kass played at Solon High School and Loras College. Rettenmeier played at Cedar Rapids Jefferson and Wartburg.







Red Top claims IABA state title

NORWAY - When it comes to a battle of attrition, it's hard to beat Red Top with a state title on the line.

Actually, it's darn near impossible.

Red Top fought back through the loser's bracket this weekend and whipped Walford in back-to-back games to claim the fourth IABA state baseball title in program history.

Red Top also stormed back through the loser's bracket last year to claim the 2015 crown with a recipe of success that includes depth, versatility, strong pitching and experienced players.

Red Top whipped Walford, 12-3, in the first championship game Sunday at the famed Norway diamond to hand Walford its first loss of the tournament, then Red Top topped the Hogs again 7-1 for the title.

"We just fight," said Red Top Manager Adam Sadler. "We're confident, but we know that Walford is a good team and Norway is a good team and there are a lot of good teams in this tournament."

None of them were better than Red Top, which also won the Iowa Valley League title this season by a wide margin.

"We're prepared, but we're loose," said Sadler. "We've been in these situations before. We have a lot of veterans, so I think that's the key for us."



Hogs, Bandits lead IVL teams at state tourney

WALFORD - The Walford Hogs and Norway Bandits finished the first weekend of the IABA state baseball tournament with perfect records, but Red Top is lurking in the wings.

Walford nipped Red Top, 2-1, in a pitcher's duel on Saturday and advanced to next weekend with a 2-0 record. Norway trimmed the Quad City 76ers, 4-1, on Sunday and advanced with a 3-0 mark.

Red Top, the 76ers, the Quad City Cardinals and Osage all advanced to the final weekend of the double-elimination tournament with 2-1 records. Fairfax, Watkins and Williamsburg from the Iowa Valley League were eliminated.

The tournament will resume Saturday in Norway with four games. Red Top plays Osage at noon, the 76ers face the Cardinals at 2 p.m., Norway will play the Red Top/Osage winner at 4 p.m. and Walford will play the 76ers/Cardinals winner at 6 p.m.



Pairings set for IABA state tourney

Twelve teams will compete in the IABA state baseball tournament this weekend with games at Norway, Walford and Muscatine.

The tournament begins Saturday with games at noon, 2 p.m., 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. at each site. The tournament will continue on Sunday and will resume next weekend with all games at Walford.

Six teams will advance to the second weekend of the tournament. Three teams will have 2-0 records and three teams will advance with 2-1 records.

Red Top won the Iowa Valley League title and will face Calmar in the opening round Saturday at 2 p.m. at Walford. All six teams from the Iowa Valley League qualified for the state tournament.

Three teams from the Black Hawk league and three teams from the North League also made the tournament.



Red Top, Walford sweep IVL twinbills

Red Top and Walford finished the regular season in the Iowa Valley League by sweeping doubleheaders on Sunday.

Red Top swept Williamsburg, 11-1 and 8-1, to finish the campaign with a 14-2 record for its sixth IVL title in a row.

Walford swept Watkins, 1-0 and 6-1, to finish in third place with a 9-7 record.


SOLON - Red Top parlayed strong pitching and good hitting into a clean sweep of Williamsburg.

Eric Schenck-Joblinske belted a home run and collected three RBIs for Red Top in the opener. Tyler Howe had a three-run double and finished with four RBIs. Reid Bonner socked a solo home run and Aaron Saeugling pitched four shutout innings with eight strikeouts for the victory.

Cole Baker raised his record to 5-1 for Red Top in the second game. He pitched five innings, allowing no hits with six strikeouts.

Ben Weeks had a three-run double for Red Top. Nick Day hit a solo home run and was 2-for-2. Manny Oletunde, who joined Red Top after finishing his prep career at Cedar Rapids Jefferson, had three hits.



Van Scoyoc helps Norway sweep twinbill

NORWAY - If your last name is Van Scoyoc and you lived in Norway for part of your life, there's a really good chance the game of baseball flows smoothly in your blood.

Spencer Van Scoyoc is the latest example.

Van Scoyoc pulled on his father's old Norway Bandits jersey Sunday and starred on the same field where his grandfather won 12 state titles as the Hall of Fame coach at old Norway High School.

Van Scoyoc delivered the game-winning sacrifice fly as Norway trimmed Fairfax, 2-1, in eight innings in the first game of an Iowa Valley League doubleheader at the venerable ballpark.

Van Scoyoc then sparkled in relief and was the winning pitcher as the Bandits took the second game, 7-1, to complete the sweep.

Van Scoyoc lived in Norway until he was seven years old in a house that sits near the ballpark. His father, Aaron Van Scoyoc, starred at Norway High School and played in the minor leagues for the New York Yankees. His grandfather, Jim Van Scoyoc, won those 12 state titles and 796 games during his legendary coaching career at Norway and helps keep the field in tip-top shape with his keen eye for detail.

"My house was right on that corner over there," Spencer Van Scoyoc said after the doubleheader, pointing in a northwest direction from the field. "We'd always come out here when I was little and play around, and now to get a chance to play on this field is pretty awesome.



Corson tosses 1-hitter for Norway

Brady Corson pitched a one-hitter with nine strikeouts Sunday as the Norway Bandits blanked Williamsburg, 11-0, in the first game of an Iowa Valley League doubleheader at Williamsburg.

The Red Sox rebounded with a 3-2 victory in the second game.

Elsewhere Sunday, Cody Bell starred with his arm and bat as Fairfax split a twinbill with Watkins.


WILLIAMSBURG - Corson was razor-sharp for Norway in the 11-0 victory in the first game.

Ron Benich belted a three-run homer for the Bandits in the opener and Zach Patterson collected a three-run double. Travis Mueller and Oswaldo Calderon also had RBI base hits for Norway.

The second game was tied, 2-2, heading into the bottom of the sixth inning. Cam Frazier led off for Williamsburg with a single and Ryan Arp was hit by a pitch. Joe Anton bunted the runners to second and third, then A.J. Liddell got the go-ahead base hit.

Chuck Lukanen tossed a complete game for Williamsburg, allowing only four hits with seven strikeouts. Dakota Freese allowed only three hits on the mound for Norway, but he walked three batters and hit three batters with a pitch.


FAIRFAX - Bell sparkled on the mound for Fairfax in the 3-1 victory in the first game. He pitched a two-hitter and struck out 14 batters.

Bell also played a major role as a batter for Fairfax with a double in the first inning. He scored on an RBI single by Jimmy Lizarraga.

Ben Sass had an RBI single for Fairfax in the second inning. Lucas Larson doubled and scored for the winners in the fourth.

Luke Franzenburg tossed a complete game for Watkins with eight strikeouts. Karson Kuester hit a double and scored the only run for Watkins.

Fairfax took a 2-1 lead into the seventh inning of the second game, but Watkins broke loose with four runs for the victory. Jake Thuman hit a two-run double to give Watkins a 3-2 lead and DJ Utley hit a two-run double for a 5-2 advantage.

Jonny Frese hit a solo home run for Watkins. Zach Morrissey tossed a complete game with 11 strikeouts.

Bell had three hits and two RBIs for Fairfax.


* Red Top        12-2
Norway            9-7
Walford           7-7
Fairfax           6-8
Williamsburg      6-8
Watkins           4-12

* Clinched title


Williamsburg at Red Top, 1
Fairfax at Norway, 1
Watkins at Walford, 4


WALFORD - Add: Tony Stenberg, Toran Shaheedy and Riley Pfiffiner. Drop: Josh Crosby, Austin Groth and Corbin Woods.
WATKINS - Add: Skylar Frese and Brady Kraus. Drop: Ezra Reiners.
WILLIAMSBURG - Add: Jacob Holub and Dustin Meirotto. Drop: Zach Brown and Lucas Robbins.


Social Media

Follow us on Facebook & Twitter!