116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS - Tyler Tscherter heard the rumors from his teammates.
The freshman right-hander expected for a chance to transition from the bullpen to Kirkwood's starting rotation. Eagles Coach Todd Rima made it official at the start of the week.
'I didn't hear from Rima until Monday,” Tscherter said. 'It was pretty exciting. I'll do whatever for these guys. I know we can field, so as long as I throw strikes they will make plays and score runs.”
Tscherter made the most of his first junior college start, throwing six scoreless innings in a 4-1 victory in a baseball doubleheader sweep over NIACC Wednesday at Kirkwood. The Eagles won the nightcap, 10-2.
'I felt pretty good with everything,” said Tscherter, a former Gladbrook-Reinbeck prep. 'My stuff was working pretty well. I was confident with everyone behind me.”
Tscherter (2-0) started the winter with a shoulder strain that set him back. He worked to get healthier and stronger. Tscherter posted a win and two saves in his first four appearances, becoming one of the most consistent Eagles out of the bullpen.
He held NIACC to five hits and allowed one unearned run, striking out four.
'He is super competitive,” Rima said. 'We envisioned him as a starter. He came in and did exactly what we needed, especially on a tough day to hit. With it being cold, he pounded the zone and gave us a great start.”
NIACC's offense was stifled most of the day. When the Trojans managed to threaten, Tscherter demonstrated composure and grit to work out of jams. The Eagles turned a 6-4-3 inning-ending double play after NIACC loaded the bases with one out in the third. Tscherter stranded two in the fourth and another in scoring position in the sixth.
'I just tried to focus on the hitter and not worry too much about runners and them scoring runs,” Tscherter said. 'I know if they score that our offense will score more.”
Rima said Tscherter has had success as a multi-sport athlete, which helps in tough situations on the mound. Tscherter is at his best when his offspeed pitches complement his fastball.
'He can throw three different pitches for strikes,” Rima said. 'His breaking ball was really good today. I think that's what kept him off balance.”
The Eagles (10-13) provided enough offensive support. Josh Fitzgerald led off with a walk, stealing second and third before scoring on Alex Pendergast's groundout for a 1-0 lead in the first. Trevor Burkhart reached on an error and accounted for the second run when Cade Moss reached on a fielder's choice in the second.
Joel Vaske and Burkhart scored on Andrue Henry's single for two more runs in the sixth.
In Game 2, Parker Shupe was 2-for-2, including a two-run home run over the right-field wall in the fourth. He also walked three times and scored twice. Chase Moseley and Pendergast had two hits apiece and Pendergast added three RBIs. Sam Goodman improved to 2-0, striking out seven in five innings for Kirkwood.
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