Big victory: J. Peltier earns 8-1 win over Keweenaw

Eddie O’Neill/Daily Mining Gazette Keweenaw’s Lyle Lasanen takes a ball during a Portage Lake Little League Majors game against J. Peltier Construction on Saturday at South Range.

SOUTH RANGE — J. Peltier Construction put together a wicked combination of quick bats and strong gloves that added up to an 8-1 victory over Keweenaw Lions Club in Portage Lake Little League action on Saturday at Veterans Field.

“The kids put together a complete game,” said J. Peltier’s manager Jesse Kentala. “They did well at the plate and made the routine plays in the field.”

Fielding, he said, has been his team’s nemesis. That was not the case on Saturday as his boys made it look easy. Routine ground balls turned into routine outs at first inning after inning.

“Some games we can’t make a play in the field,” added Kentala. “Today, we made some brilliant plays. It was good to see.”

J. Peltier’s scoring started in the bottom of the first inning as Rylan Maki jumped on first base with a walk. Ethan Hainault, Liam Tourtillot and Jorren Rajala all followed with base hits to make the score 2-0 after one.

They added three more in the third after Tourtillot smacked a triple deep to left-center field. The three-bagger brought home Hainault. Tourtillut then scored on a Latham Salmi double up the middle, and Conner Laitala brought him in on a line-drive double two batters later. It was 5-0.

Not only was J. Peltier’s fielding strong but so was their pitching. Hainault was their starter. He threw strikes and struck out at least two in the three innings that he pitched.

“All I ask is that our pitchers throw strikes,” said Kentala, “and he (Hainault) did just that.”

Keweenaw’s starter, Elliot Isaacson, also did well. His best inning was the second as he faced four batters and struck out three of them.

Keweenaw got their lone run in the top of the fourth inning. Lyle Lasanen started the rally with a walk. Peter Torola followed with a walk and they both advanced to third and second on a grounder hit to the pitcher by John Huuki.

Isaacson then walked to load the bases and Lasana came home on a walk to Kane Pintar. The inning ended with a Preston Hodges ground out.

One run would not be nearly enough as J. Peltier tacked on three more of their own in their half of the fourth to hang on to the 8-1 win. With the victory, they moved to 4-7 on the season.