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Roughriders beat Mandan, fall out of state tourney against Williston

Photo by Chris Aarhus / Forum Communications Dickinson's Taylor Kraenzel scores from third base and is awaited by teammate Mark Erickson while Williston catcher Lane Huck waits for the ball in their Class A American Legion state baseball tournament elimination game Thursday in Mandan.

MANDAN -- Backed against a wall, the Dickinson Roughriders finally found that elusive mojo -- and hours later, it was gone.

Brett Braunagel hit a grand slam and Aaron Berg pitched eight solid innings to help the No. 8 seed Roughriders defeat the seventh-seeded Mandan Chiefs 11-7 on their home field in an elimination game Friday afternoon at the Class A American Legion state baseball tournament at Veteran's Memorial Ballpark.

Later in the evening, the first part of the Roughriders' postseason came to an end with a 9-5 loss to the rival Williston Keybirds in their consolation-round game of the day.

Dickinson's season isn't over though. The Roughriders will continue to play-- for two more games, at least -- because they host the Central Plains Regional Tournament that begins Aug. 9 at Southside Municipal Ballpark.

In the opening game, Braunagel drove in six of Dickinson's runs, adding a two-run single in the seventh that all but put Mandan away.

"We needed somebody to step up and get a key hit," Dickinson head coach Cory Hansen said. "Braunagel had that home run in the first inning. That kind of got things started."

Dickinson (15-27) piled on 12 hits and took an 8-2 lead after a four-run third inning. From there, Berg kept Mandan at bay into the ninth, despite giving up 13 hits and five earned runs.

Parker Harm started, pitched three innings and took the loss for the Chiefs (17-36).

Korey Kallenbach relieved Berg in the ninth and helped get Dickinson out of a jam along with Taylor Kraenzel, who moved from second base to left field when Kallenbach came on to pitch and made a diving catch in the outfield to end the game.

Dickinson's Mark Erickson plated two runs and scored three.

While Dickinson continued to find the gaps in the second game, it couldn't keep up with the Keybirds, who had five players with multiple hits and rallied behind Cody Laber's complete game.

Jacob Brokaw was 3-for-5 with a double, three RBI and two runs scored. Isaac Black went 3-for-4 with two doubles and three runs. Jeff Beckman was 3-for-5 with a double and two RBI.

Luke Herauf was 2-for-4 with a double, two RBI and a run to pace Dickinson. Sean Kelly was 2-for-2 with an RBI and a run.

Dickinson plays the Nebraska champion to wrap up the first day of the Central Plains Regional next Thursday.

Mandan 200 100 103 -- 7 14 2

Dickinson 404 000 21x -- 11 12 4

Parker Harm, Zach Scott (4), Kyler Vogel (9) and Dwight Mack. Aaron Berg, Korey Kallenbach (9) and Mark Erickson. W-Berg. L-Harm. HR-D, Brett Braunagel.

Highlights: M, Tanner Schaf 1-for-6, RBI, R; Tre Kautzman 1-for-5, RBI, run; Aaron Janz, 2-for-3, 2 2B, RBI, 3 R; Logan McDowall 2-for-4, 2 RBI; Harm 2-for-2, 2B; Brady Zittleman 2-for-4, RBI. D, Dylan Skabo 1-for-5, R; Mark Erickson 2-for-4, 2 RBI; Luke Herauf 1-for-4, 2 R; James Kary 2-for-3, RBI, R, 2 BB; Braunagel 2-for-4, HR, 6 RBI; Alex Huschka 1-for-5, R; Korey Kallenbach 3-for-5, R; Taylor Kraenzel 2-for-4, 2B, RBI; Berg 8 IP, 5 ER, 13 H, 3 K, 3 BB, 138 P.

Dickinson 021 200 000 -- 5 8 4

Williston 104 110 02x -- 9 14 2

Korey Kallenbach, Alex Huschka (5) and Brady Dutchak. Cody Laber and Lane Huck. W-Laber. L-Kallenbach. HR-None.

Highlights: D, Dylan Skabo 1-for-4, 2B, RBI, R; Luke Herauf 2-for-4, 2B, 2 RBI, R; James Kary 1-for-4; Taylor Kraenzel 1-for-4, R; Sean Kelly 2-for-2, RBI, R; Dutchak 1-for-3. W, Isaac Black 3-for-4, 2 2B, 3 R; Caden Lerbakken 2-for-3, 2B, RBI, 2 R; Jacob Brokaw 3-for-5, 2B, 3 RBI, 2 R; Jeff Beckman 3-for-5, 2B, 2 RBI; R; Josh Solen 2-for-3; Sam Falcon 1-for-4, R; Laber 9 IP, 8 H, 5 ER, 2 K, 3 BB.

Records: Dickinson 15-27.