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Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Anthony Varriano photo

Blue Devils show Dickinson mercy

By Anthony Varriano

Ranger-Review Staff Writer

The Glendive American Legion baseball team looked to be in trouble against Dickinson on Wednesday at Meissner Field, but recovered nicely to end it quickly.

Blue Devils 14, Dickinson 4

Four passed balls and a sacrifice fly caught in foul territory made it 4-0 Dickinson in the second inning, as David Skerritt struggled with his control. Glendive head coach Brent Diegel doesn’t exactly know why his young pitchers struggle early and settle down nicely, but thought preparation might be the problem.

“They’re all supposed to have a routine they follow to warm-up for the game, and a lot of it is the young pitchers aren’t getting themselves ready properly, and it’s hard if I’m the only person there,” Diegel explained. “Not all the coaches can be at all the games ahead of time, so I think it’s just preparation. Sometimes it’s just timing, like they finish warming early and then sit around for five minutes.”

Skerritt didn’t get a chance to settle in, as the Devil lineup batted around in the third inning, making for a long break for the starting pitcher. He was relieved by Josh Hoffer, who pitched two scoreless frames. 

The Blue Devils got one run back in the bottom of the second inning, when Jayden Holley scored on a bloop single by Taylor Conrad, who took second base on the throw home.

The Devils poured it on in the third, as the first six batters in the inning reached base and scored. Gunnar Garpestad started the long third inning with a single and later scored on a passed ball after Anthony Lopez walked and Logan LeProwse singled him to third base. 

More errors by Dickinson allowed the Devils to tie it at 4, as a passed ball resulted in another bad throw that plated two runs. The Devils would reload the bases after a visit to the mound, and Richie Franks’ sacrifice fly gave Glendive its first lead of the game, 5-4.

Wyatt Buxbaum singled and later scored, and Holley hustled around third and scored on a single by Jake Rieger to make it 7-4. Rieger would also score, as did Garpestad for the second time in the inning. When the dust settled it was 10-4 Glendive.

Garpestad scored his third run in the fifth inning, and he finished 3-for-4 with a double and a walk in the leadoff spot. LeProwse also finished 3-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored. 

Cade Dockter came around to score in the fifth after a single, and Conrad and Rieger tacked on two more runs. Rieger was 2-for-4 with a double, two runs scored and three RBI. Conrad was 2-for-5 with two runs scored and one RBI after scoring the mercy-rule run in the bottom half of the eighth in what was supposed to be a nine-inning game.

Franks and LeProwse combined to pitch three scoreless innings to preserve the win. 

The Glendive B team split a doubleheader with Williston on Wednesday, winning 7-6 and falling 14-7. 

The Glendive Legion A team visits the Billings Cardinals for two games on Saturday at 2 and 4 p.m. They’ll stay to see the highly competitive Billings Blue Jays on Sunday, with games scheduled for noon and 2 p.m. The Blue Devils host Sidney at 5 and 7 p.m. on Tuesday.

Reach Anthony Varriano at rrsports@rangerreview.com.

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