Williston takes sweep over Post 15 squad
DETROIT LAKES - The Williston, N. D. Keybirds didn't dominate the Detroit Lakes American Legion Post 15 baseball team in a doubleheader Monday night at Washington Ballpark.
What Williston - composed of members of the high school Class A champion Coyotes - did was just enough to get two wins.
Casey Gardner's substitution in a pitch runner for the Keybirds paved the way to a 6-5 eighth-inning win in the nightcap. Williston won the first game 5-2.
"That's the best baseball team we've played all year," said Post 15 coach Mitch McLeod.
Gardner came in after Jake Axtman led off the eighth with a single. He made it to third off of Jordan Braun's sacrifice bunt - tripping over second along the way. And then scored what would be the winning run when Shawn Egge singled.
Williston's comeback culminated a four-run rally over the last three innings, scoring runs from smart decisions on the base paths - just like Gardner's run around the diamond.
The tying run came in the fifth. Trevor Sorenson led off with a walk and moved to third when James Laqua singled.
Doug Richter sent Sorenson home when he hit a comebacker to Johnson. Johnson didn't have enough time to make a play at home, so he went for the safe out at first.
Post 15 starter Brock Johnson thought he was reaching his limit towards the end.
"My arm was getting pretty tired," he said. "(But) I knew I had a couple of innings left."
Replacing Johnson wasn't really an option, McLeod said. He said that with ace Chris Gilson out on a summer trip for a few days and the team having six games more games this week, he needed to save some arms.
"We would have brought in Gilson in that situation," he said.
Putting itself in a position to close the game, Detroit Lakes (7-11) went up 5-4 in the sixth. Nick Polejewski started the rally by reaching on an error by Alex Hanson. Polejewski ended being forced at second when Reed Oisted grounded to short.
Oisted was safe at first and scored when Aaron Gnoinsky doubled.
Two runs by the Keybirds in the top of sixth tied the game. A leadoff walk and a single allowed by Johnson put the pressure on.
Hanson, who led off with the single, stole second and advanced to third on a passed ball by Doug Dickey. Axtman scored Hanson on a fielder's choice.
Jeff Skadeland, reaching on the walk, went to second when Johnson overthrew the bag when Axtman hit one straight to him. An Egge sac fly to deep right scored Skadeland.
Detroit Lakes struck early by scoring two in the first, and a run each in the second and third.
Coming up big for Post 15 was Max Bentley - hitting a shot to center for a solo home run in the second and adding an RBI single in the third.
Oisted and Gnoinsky scored Detroit Lakes' first two runs after reaching on two straight errors by the Keybirds. Jake Kiebke's sac bunt set in motion Oisted's run.
Oisted went to third and then scored when no one covered home. Dickey grounded out to score Gnoinsky.
At first, it seemed Williston had the upper hand when Egge led off with a first pitch home run. The Keybirds added their second in the third to tie the game at two.
Johnson pitched seven innings in striking out six and allowing five hits. Despite allowing Williston to comeback, it was one of his better outings in the summer.
"I've got more of my confidence back," Johnson said. "I really didn't have any when the summer began."
Polejewski pitched the eighth in getting tagged with the loss.
Hanson picked up the win for Williston in working two perfect innings.
Williston had no problem in winning the first game.
Sorenson pitched a gem in going six and striking out five.
A three-run fourth put the Keybirds up for good.
Braun's three-run home run did Post 15 in as starter Jon Tolbert allowed a walk and a single after getting two quick outs.
Quinn Devlin had a home run of his own - a solo blast in the fifth.
The final run came in the seventh when Laqua doubled in Sorenson.
Both of Detroit Lakes' runs came after a fifth-inning rally. Kiebke's double brought in Gnoinsky from first. Dickey followed that up with a double of his own to the same spot in center that sent Kiebke around.
Despite allowing the two home runs, Tolbert did well otherwise in pitching a full seven. He allowed 10 hits.
Detroit Lakes takes on Fergus Falls in a doubleheader on Thursday and East Grand Forks in a twinbill on Saturday, both at home starting at 5 p.m.
Post 15 stats
Williston, N.D at Detroit Lakes American Legion Post 15, Monday, July 7.
Williston 000 310 1 - 5 10 0
Post 15 000 020 0 - 2 7 2
AB R H Bi
S. Egge 4 0 1 0
Q. Devlin 4 1 1 1
T. Sorenson 2 1 0 0
J. Laqua 4 0 2 1
D. Richter 4 0 1 0
T. Hanson 3 0 1 0
J.Skadeland 2 1 1 0
T. Burnette 2 1 2 0
J. Braun 3 1 1 3
Totals 28 5 10 5
HR: Braun, Devlin. 2B: Burnette, Egge.
AB R H Bi
R. Oisted 4 0 1 0
A. Gnoinsky 3 1 1 0
J. Kiebke 4 1 2 1
D. Dickey 4 0 2 1
B.Magnuson 4 0 0 0
C. McLeod 4 0 0 0
A. Thielen 3 0 0 0
B. Johnson 3 0 0 0
J. Tolbert 3 0 1 0
Totals 32 2 7 2
2B: Dickey, Kiebke.
Pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-k): W - T. Sorenson (WP) 6-7-2-2-3-5...T. Burnette (S) 1-0-0-0-0-2. DL: - J. Tolbert (LP) 7-10-5-5-4-2.
Williston 101 020 11 - 6 7 3
Post 15 211 001 00 - 5 9 4
AB R H Bi
S. Egge 5 1 2 3
Q. Devlin 4 1 2 1
T. Sorenson 3 1 0 0
J. Laqua 3 0 1 0
D. Richter 3 0 0 0
T. Hanson 4 1 1 0
J.Skadeland 3 1 0 0
J. Axtman 4 0 1 1
C. Gardner 0 1 0 0
J. Braun 3 0 0 0
Totals 28 6 7 5
HR: Egge. 2B: Devlin.
AB R H Bi
R. Oisted 3 2 0 0
A. Gnoinsky 3 1 1 1
J. Kiebke 3 0 0 1
D. Dickey 4 0 0 1
B.Magnuson 4 0 2 0
C. McLeod 3 1 1 0
A. Thielen 4 0 2 0
M. Bentley 4 1 2 2
N. Pojewlski 4 0 1 0
Totals 28 2 9 2
HR: Bentley. 2B: McLeod, Gnoinsky.
Pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-k): W - E. Olson (WP) 6-8-5-3-1-0...A. Hanson (S) 2-1-0-0-0-1) DL - B. Johnson 7-5-4-4-6...N. Polejewski (LP) 1-2-1-1-1-0.