After a classic pitching duel of left-handers, Rice Lake scored an unearned run in the bottom of the ninth off Amery reliever Brett Forrest to win 1-0 in a Division 2 regional baseball opener Thursday in Rice Lake.
Rice Lake's Isaac Rohde and Amery's Kale Hopke matched zeroes on the scoreboard until Rohde gave way to reliever Matt Juza in the eighth inning and Hopke to Forrest in the ninth.
Juza retired Amery in order in the top of the ninth and was the winning pitcher. Rohde allowed only one hit—a bloop single in the seventh—in his eight strong innings of work. He walked two and struck out five.
Rice Lake had only four hits and scored the winning run without the benefit of a hit. Nolan Rowe led off the bottom of the ninth with a walk, stole second and was safe at third when Amery fielded Callub Paulson's bunt and tried to force Rowe at third. When the ball got past the third baseman, Rowe raced home with the winning run.
No 3-seeded Rice Lake moves on to the regional semifinal at No. 2-seeded Hayward on Tuesday, May 28. Hayward defeated Barron 5-1 on Thursday.