Laker baseball advances to double-elimination portion of Section 8-2A playoffs
DETROIT LAKES - Quick starts so far have been a staple to success for the Detroit Lakes baseball team during their current run through the Section 8-2A playoffs.
The North's top-seeded Lakers guaranteed themselves two more games in the playoffs after thwarting the visiting No. 4 Roseau 11-5 Saturday at Washington Ballpark.
The Lakers traveled to Crookston today (Tuesday) to face Warroad in the first game of the double-elimination portion of the tournament at 3 p.m.
A win will send the Lakers to the semifinals, while a loss sends them to the loser's bracket. In both scenarios, the games will start at 5:30 p.m. today (Tuesday).
In the other half of the section, Fergus Falls will face Pelican Rapids.
DL scored all of its runs in the first two innings, while collecting seven of their nine hits in the two frames, along with five walks by Roseau pitcher Tyler Orgon and three Ram's errors.
"Their pitcher was struggling throwing strikes and our guys were patient at the plate," said DL head coach Steve Fuhs. "Our guys also hit the ball and made them make the plays. We also received some timely hits, as well."
Designated hitter Brock Johnson gained the first of several of those timely hits in the first inning after delivering an RBI single to score Max Knoll, who reached on a walk.
Joe Thompson railed a two-out double, scoring two more runs, while taking home on the Ram's second error of the inning for the 5-0 advantage.
The second inning was much of the same -- plus one -- as DL ran its lead up to 11-0 on four hits and two walks.
Senior shortstop Reed Oistad picked up his second hit in as many innings and an RBI, while senior catcher Brandon Johnson popped off a two-run single to break the game open 9-0.
The Laker's scoring was capped by an Andy Pedersen single to bring in Thompson, who reached on a walk.
"We were able to execute on some plays offensively and they made a couple of errors to help our cause," Fuhs said of the two big innings.
The benefactor of the 11-0 lead was pitcher Alex Guetter, who threw four shutout innings and allowed just one hit leading up to a five-run fifth by Roseau.
Guetter was pitching strikes, but hit a bump in the road in the fifth where he walked two. But the DL defense didn't help his cause by committing two errors in the inning, which led to four unearned runs.
"We didn't play great defense, which we need to clean up for the rest of the playoffs," Fuhs said of his team's five errors in the game.
But the Lakers did twist a couple of big double plays to minimize the damage, the first coming in the first inning to nullify a no-out, two on situation by Roseau.
Third baseman Connor McLeod was able to snag a liner down the baseline and relay the throw to first base to double off the runner, who was caught in deadman's territory.
The second came in the next inning on a 4-6-3 double play, started by second baseman Aaron Gnoinsky to shortstop Oistad and finishing up with a throw to first end a potential rally.
Fuhs also credited the outfield with a strong outing, including senior centerfielder Max Knoll's diving backhand catch to save a double.
"Joe Thompson added two diving catches, too, so the outfield played well," Fuhs said.
Brandon Johnson and Oistad led the hitting attack with two apiece, while the Rams were led by Orgon and Zach Johnson with two hits each.
Section 8-2A playoffs, second round: (4) Roseau at (1) Detroit Lakes, Saturday, May 30.
Rams 000 050 0 - 5 8 3
Lakers 560 000 0 - 11 9 5
AB R H Bi
A. Gnoinsky 5 1 0 0
M. Knoll 3 1 0 0
R. Oistad 4 2 2 0
Bro. Johnson 3 2 1 1
N. Polejewski 4 1 1 1
Bra. Johnson 4 2 2 1
J. Thompson 3 2 1 2
C. McLeod 2 0 1 1
A. Pedersen 3 0 1 1
Totals 31 11 9 7
2B: Bra. Johnson.
AB R H Bi
Z. Johnson 4 1 2 0
T. Landman 2 1 1 0
K. Erickson 3 1 1 1
E. Kvidt 4 0 0 0
T. Orgon 4 0 2 2
T. Erickson 4 0 1 0
L. Norman 3 1 1 0
A. Mekash 3 0 0 0
E. Massaro 3 1 0 0
Totals 30 5 8 3
Pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-k): DL - A. Guetter (WP) 7-8-5-2-3-3...Ros: Orgon (LP) 6-9-11-6-3-7.