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Saturday, March 24, 2018

Anthony Varriano photo

Costly errors prevent Blue Devils from upsetting No. 1 Laurel

By Anthony Varriano

Ranger-Review Staff Writer

The Glendive American Legion baseball team nearly upset the top team in their conference at Meissner Field on Friday night, but costly errors in the field thwarted the Blue Devils’ efforts.

“It’s something that shouldn’t happen at this point. We had a little talk after the doubleheader and hopefully that works, but it’s hard to teach competitiveness,” Blue Devil head coach Brent Diegel explained. “It seems when our guys get down they want to quit.”

Laurel 7, Blue Devils 3

The Blue Devils had a lead in game two of the doubleheader, as Anthony Lopez singled in a run to make it 3-1 in the second inning. Logan LeProwse then roped one right at the center fielder to end the inning.

LeProwse got two of three outs in Laurel’s half of the third for a quick inning, and it stayed 3-1 after the Devils’ half. 

Laurel loaded the bases and scored on a ball with eyes that snuck through the right side. The Dodgers plated another run on a throwing error, though, and suddenly it was tied. Laurel would plate another on a fielder’s choice to take the lead.

Cody Rossi nearly cut down a run at home plate with a strong throw from left field in the top of the fifth, but a short hop allowed the runner to beat the throw to make it 5-3. Another seeing-eye single snuck through for Laurel in the sixth to make it 6-3, and another error made it 7-3 Laurel.

Devils starting pitcher Josh Hoffer didn’t allow many hard-hit balls, but the defense behind him cost him at least three runs.

Laurel 7, Blue Devils 0

The Devils didn’t get off to a good start in game one, as Rossi allowed six runs in the first inning.

“He struggled a little bit, walked a couple guys and gave up a few hits, but then he settled in and only gave up another run in the sixth inning,” Diegel explained. “We had five hits but just couldn’t get anything rolling.”

Errors again gave Laurel an edge.

“I think we ended up having three or four errors in that first game, and you know Laurel’s the number one seed, and in the second game we had a lead that we blew thanks to some throwing and fielding errors,” Diegel said.

The Glendive Legion B team also dropped both games of a doubleheader to Williston on Thursday, 14-5 and 11-7. Cade Dockter had four hits, a walk and two RBI over the two games. 

The A team hosts Williston at 4 and 6 p.m. on Wednesday before kicking off the Culli Memorial Tournament on Friday. The B team visited Sidney on Tuesday and will also participate in the Culli Tournament over the weekend.

Reach Anthony Varriano at rrsports@rangerreview.com.

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