Area teams fight for top spot
The division champions have been decided.
And, local baseball fans can take pride in the fact that it was the Blue Earth Pirates that rose to the top.
Although, it was two local teams pitted against one another, fighting for the win.
The Pirates took on the Wells Wildcats on July 10, and after six innings of a low-scoring, tie game, the Pirates decided to shake things up for their opponents.
Blue Earth finished the game with the victory, leaving Wells in the dust with a score of 6-2.
The Pirates brought the first two runners of the game across the plate in the second inning. Kane Malo and Aaron Wendt both scored runs after teammate Zach Dahl hit a double.
In the third inning, Wells tried to keep pace and brought in a run of their own.
It wasn’t until the fifth inning that the Wildcats scored another run and tied the score, 2-2.
The Pirates had a short-lived at bat in the sixth inning, getting out after just three batters.
Wells experienced a similar at bat, getting out after just three batters in the sixth inning as well.
But, the next inning was a different story for Blue Earth. Zach Dahl took a base on balls, then Carter Hanson hit a single.
It was a hot hit by Cody Sukalski that turned the game around in the Pirates’ favor. With his two teammates on base, he took a swing.
Sukalski hit a three-run homer that brought all three of them across the bag and put the score at 5-2.
Then, in the ninth inning, Dahl crossed home plate again giving the Pirates their 6-2 victory.
Sukalski was 1 for 4 batting and his three-run homer gave him one run and three RBIs.
Lee Hodges was 1 for 4 and hit a double. TJ Schmidtke was 2 for 5 batting and had one RBI.
Dahl was 2 for 2 at bat and had two runs and two RBIs.
Malo and Wendt were both 1 for 4 batting and each scored one run.
Wendt also pitched all nine innings for the Pirates. He allowed seven hits, four bases on balls, and two runs. Wendt had 10 strikeouts.
This win put the Pirates at an over all record of 13-7. They have only had two league losses, giving them a league record of 10-2.
They will move on to post-season league playoffs which are set to begin on July 20 and 21.
Pirates 13, Waterville 2
The Pirates played Waterville in Blue Earth on July 7 and defeated their opponents in just seven innings by a score of 13-2.
By the end of the fourth inning, Blue Earth was in a 5-1 lead.
The fifth inning allowed the Pirates to utilize nearly the entire batting lineup, when they scored an additional five runs, moving even farther into the lead, 10-2.
They solidified their success by bringing three more runners across home plate for the 13-2 win.
Cody Sukalski was 0 for 2 batting but took two bases on balls and scored two runs.
TJ Schmidtke was 1 for 3 batting and had one base on balls, one run and one RBI.
Bob Olson was 2 for 3, took one base on balls and had two RBIs.
Lee Hodges was 2 for 3 and scored one run. He also had two RBIs and took one base on balls.
TJ Stallman was 2 for 3, took one base on balls and scored three runs.
Kane Malo was 2 for 4 at the plate and scored two runs.
Other batters included: Aaron Wendt who was 2 for 2 and scored one run; Trent Sonnicksen who was 2 for 4 and scored one run; and Domitri Beck who was 2 for 4 and scored two runs.
Hodges pitched five innings allowing five hits, one base on balls and two runs. He also had four strikeouts.
Sukalski pitched two innings and allowed three hits and had one strikeout.
New Richland 2
The Blue Earth Pirates had a lot riding on their match up against New Richland on July 3.
If the Pirates won, they were still in the running for division champions. However, if New Richland won they would be number one in the division.
Luckily, the Pirates had no problem ending the game with a 9-2 victory.
Trent Sonnicksen was 3 for 5 and had one run and two RBIs.
TJ Schmidtke was 2 for 6 at bat and had one run and one RBI.
Lee Hodges was 2 for 5, took one base on balls and had two runs.
TJ Stallman was 4 for 5. He had one base on balls and four RBIs.
Kane Malo was 1 for 5 batting and scored one run.
Aaron Wendt was 1 for 4, took one base on balls and scored one run.
Zach Dahl was 1 for 5 batting and scored two runs.
Domitri Beck was 2 for 3, took one base on balls, scored one run and had two RBIs.
Wendt pitched eight innings. He allowed four hits, two bases on balls and one run. He also had nine strikeouts.
Sonnicksen pitched one inning and allowed three hits, one base on balls and one run. He also had three strikeouts.