Monday, October 3, 2022
Canova clips Tabor in extra innings, spoiling Riley Rothschadl's pitching debut
Canova's Trey Krier scores the game-winning run against Tabor on Friday at Cadwell Park.
(Rodney Haas / 605 Sports)
Aug 5, 2022

By Ryan Deal 

605 Sports

MITCHELL — The Canova Gang, a tournament heavyweight, spoiled a pitching sensation’s amateur tournament baseball debut Friday.

Canova, a town synonymous with South Dakota amateur baseball, avoided a major upset as Tim Gassman’s walk-off single in the 10th inning lifted it past Tabor at Cadwell Park. 

Gassman’s single propelled Canova to a 3-2 victory as it breathed a huge sigh of relief. 

“It is the Canova curse,” Canova pitcher Derek Miller said. “It truly is. The first game is always the hardest for us. After that, we seem to settle down and bounce back. So I am glad we got the first one out of the way and we can relax and move on.” 

Tabor, particularly pitcher Riley Rothschadl, didn’t let Canova relax until the game-winning run. A Legion player, Rothschadl didn’t look fazed by the moment and threw seven scoreless innings against mighty Canova. Rothschadl, who will be a senior at Bon Homme, gave up one earned run, three hits, three walks and struck out eight batters. 

“He was mixing it up well with us and able to kind of keep us at bay until the end,” Gassman said. “So he’s got a pretty bright future ahead of him.”

Rothschadl, however, couldn’t close it out for the upset-minded Bluebirds. Due to the 105-pitch count rule for Legion players, he exited the game in the seventh inning and drew a nice applause from the Cadwell Park crowd. 

He also drew praise from his pitching counterpart. 

“I told him on second base ‘That was a helluva game,’ ” Miller said. “He has a great college career coming up. He’s going to be really good. South Dakota people should pay attention to that kid. He’s that good.”

But Rothschadl’s exit spelled the beginning of the end for Tabor, which brought in Austin White to replace him. White lasted just seven pitches and Canova’s Garrett Gassman lofted an RBI single into shallow right field, getting Canova within 2-1 in the eighth. Bryce Scieszinski pitched the final two innings, giving up four hits, three earned runs, four walks and struck out four batters.  

In the ninth, Garrett Gassman drew a bases-loaded walk to even it at 2-2. Jason Miller flew out in the next at-bat to force extra innings on a hot and blustery day in Mitchell.  

“That was a grind for both teams,” Tim Gassman said. “We kind of got ourselves in some difficult situations, but we were able to keep the runs at bay. Derek did a good job. I think defensively we had some hiccups, but overall we were able to hold them at bay.” 

Tabor's Riley Rothschadl delivers pitch against Canova on Friday at Cadwell Park. (Rodney Haas / 605 Sports)

Miller gave up a lead-off single in the 10th and exited after 135 pitches. He struck out seven batters, allowed nine hits, one earned run and issued one walk. 

Tabor scored a run apiece in the first and second innings, but Miller responded with seven scoreless innings. 

“It’s kind of my deal — if you are going to get me — get me early,” Miller said. “You have to settle down too and make some pitches.”

Justin Miller relieved Miller and immediately found himself in a jam. Tabor’s Austin White and Bryce Scieszinski hit back-to-back singles to lead off the 10th. Tabor couldn’t capitalize as Nolan Carda struck out, Chase Kortan grounded out to shortstop and Alec Martin struck out.  

In the 10th, Trey Krier hit a lead-off single, advanced to second on a passed ball and moved to third on a Derek Miller single into right field. 

It set the stage for Tim Gassman, who was 0-for-4 before his walk-off single. 

“I felt like I was able to square things up nicely,” said Gassman about the 2-2 pitch. “I just couldn’t get them to fall all game or nothing, and knowing that situation with a guy at third, I just have to get something to the outfield to give us a chance. So that’s kind of the approach I went with and tried to at least get that run in.”

The Canova Gang earned a walk-off win over Tabor on Friday at Cadwell Park. (Rodney Haas / 605 Sports)

Offensively, Rothschadl, Joey Slama and White had two hits apiece. Tyler Edler and Rothschadl drove in runs to spot Tabor its 2-0 lead. 

For Canova, Garrett Gassman had two hits and two RBI. Krier added two hits, while Tim Gassman drove in two runs. 

The Gang will now gear up for the second round after the hard-fought win. Canova will play either Wynot, Nebraska, or Lennox on Monday. 

“Everyone has that first game jitters,” Tim Gassman said. “So getting that one behind you, you can get back to normally the way you want to play and get back into the groove.”