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Dueling aces: Huschka, Regimbal took mound for nightcap as Royals sweep Riders

Dickinson starting pitcher Alex Huschka throws against Grand Forks during an American Legion doubleheader on Friday at Southside Municipal Ballpark and Astoria Field.1 / 2
Grand Forks starter Brady Regimbal pitches against Dickinson.2 / 2

With Alex Huschka and Brady Regimbal on the mound during the nightcap, runs were going to be a premium.

Huschka and Regimbal are the aces for the Dickinson Roughriders and Grand Forks Royals, respectively.

Each pitcher struggled at times with each giving up multiple runs, but Regimbal came away with a 4-3 win in the nightcap during an American Legion conference doubleheader on Friday at Southside Municipal Ballpark and Astoria Field.

With the nightcap win, the Royals swept the Roughriaders after coming away with a 12-9 victory.

“Especially after the first game being a slugfest, we knew it was going to come down to a low-scoring game,” said Regimbal, the Royals’ left-handed starter. “I really got on myself after allowing those first runs, because I knew they were going to be hard to come by for both teams. I knew it was a duel out there.”

Regimbal and Huschka each went seven innings. The Grand Forks left-handed pitcher allowed three runs on four hits and struck out six — including striking out the side in the sixth inning. Huschka allowed four runs on six hits and struck out two.

“I figured it would be a duel,” Huschka said. “(Regimbal) is a good pitcher, he’s got good offspeed and he likes to hit his spots. We both get rattled and that’s going to be happen.”

The Roughriders took a 3-2 lead after the fourth inning when Huschka and Dylan Wallner crossed the plate.

Yet, the Royals’ bats weren’t done and responded with a two-run fifth inning. Kaleb Binstock ripped a RBI double to score Logan Montgomery for the game-winning run.

“I felt pretty comfortable on the mound tonight,” Huschka said. “Most of my offspeed was working well. It was just a couple mistakes I made and let some balls up in the zone that they got ahold of and hit them for doubles.”

Dickinson received hits from Dylan Skabo, Cole Anderson, Dylan Wallner and Kendall Jones. Grand Forks’ Montgomery, Binstock and Cole Kirchoffner each supplied doubles, while Colin Hennessy and Eric Leach both had a base hit.

In the opener, Grand Forks didn’t waste any time putting Dickinson into an early deficit.

The Royals scored six runs in the two innings — including a five-run first. Grand Forks tacked on six more runs in the fifth inning.

“We played kind of sloppy in the first game, we put ourselves in a big hole and we had a tough time coming back,” Dickinson head coach Cory Hansen said. “We got picked off to end the game and those are the type of things that we can’t be doing in these situations.”

Dickinson starter Cole Anderson was tagged with the loss after going 4 1/3 innings, allowed 10 runs (eight earned) and struck out two. Tanner Ouellette finished the game and allowed two runs over 2 2/3 innings.

The Royals’ Jace Braathen posted two hits and three RBI, while Brandon Walters had one hit and two RBI. Regimbal went 3 for 5 with two doubles, RBI and scored one run.

Down 12-2, Dickinson attempted a comeback after Andrew Heckaman ripped a three-run home run to left field. The Roughriders managed to close the gap to three runs in the seventh inning, but couldn’t rally all the way back.

Huschka and Skabo each had three hits for the Roughriders. Skabo scored three runs and had three stolen bases, while Huschka added a RBI and scored a run.

The Roughriders continue their homestand with Fargo Post 2 at 1 p.m. Sunday.

“We are skating on thin ice right now,” Hansen said. “We got guys that are tired. We’ve had to use everybody and we don’t have a whole lot of arms left. We got two starters, but if we have to go to the bullpen we are going to be in trouble.”