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Baseball: Five-day stretch starts on good note

By Staff | May 13, 2016

Rugby's Kyle Ebach at bat during a double header game in Minot.

The Rugby Panther baseball team started a four games in five days stretch on the right note, only for things to go sour after.

Last Thursday the Panthers took on Bottineau at Northern Lights field in Rugby. The Panthers put up nine runs in innings four thru six to pick up the 10-2 region victory. Rugby never trailed in the game and was offensively led by junior Kyle Ebach, who was 2-3 with two RBIs and a run scored. Senior Evan Burckhard was the winning pitcher for Rugby. The game was delayed for a little bit as sophomore Kyler Odden was hit in the head on a throw to home plate as he was scoring. Odden received medical help right away, and is doing just fine.

The Panthers then partook in a doubleheader in Minot last Saturday. Game one saw Rugby versus Harvey-Wells County in a regional game. It was a make-up game from a previous date. Panthers staked themselves out to 6-0 after three innings and it was a 6-1 score heading to the top of the seventh. Panther defense ran into trouble and Harvey got hot as they pushed five runs across the board to tie the game at six all. Panthers were unable to score in the bottom of the seventh and the game went to extra innings.

Both sides had opportunities in extra innings, but it wasn’t until the 12th inning the Hornets scored twice in the top half to take an 8-6 lead. Panthers scored once in the bottom of the frame, and had runners at first and third with two outs, but a ground out ended the game. Final score was 8-7 in favor of Harvey. Burckhard led the offense with a 4/5 performance at the plate, swatting two doubles, had a RBI and run scored. Junior Anders Johnson pitched the first seven innings, and fellow classmate Johnny Mueller pitched the final five.

After the 12-inning marathon, the Panthers were both physically and mentally exhausted as their second game, versus Bishop Ryan, ended in a 14-5 loss.

The fourth game in five days had the Panthers vising Cando, taking on North Star. On a windy day, it was the pitchers who reigned supreme. Panthers’ starter Landen Foster (sophomore) worked the first four innings. He pitched well giving up just two runs, one was earned. Mueller came in and pitched nearly two flawless innings. Problem was, the pitcher for North Star, junior Jayden Komrosky, was stellar as he limited the Panthers to four hits, walked one and struck out 13 batters. This all equated to a 2-0 Bearcat victory.

“We need the kids to be confident,” commented co-head coach Kendall Schieve, “..just haven’t been able to make that play here or get this hit there.”

The Panthers took on Harvey-Wells County on Thursday; they have a double header with Washburn on Saturday and then wrap up the regular season Monday at home versus Northern Lights. At the time of this writing, Rugby had a 4-10 (2-4) record.

Hauser is the sports director for AM 1450 KZZJ radio.

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