Late runs lift DHS past MandanOnce the Dickinson High baseball team finally got the lead against Mandan on Thursday, coach Pete Dobitz wasn’t about to take any chances.
By: Chris Aarhus, The Dickinson Press
Once the Dickinson High baseball team finally got the lead against Mandan on Thursday, coach Pete Dobitz wasn’t about to take any chances.
The Midgets scored a pair of runs on a throwing error by Mandan in the bottom of the sixth inning to take a one-run lead and ace Stephen Laylock struck out the side in order in the top of the seventh as Dickinson squeezed out a 7-6 West Region victory at Southside Municipal Ballpark.
Laylock, who’s scheduled to pitch against Minot on Saturday, picked up his first save of the season.
“I took my same approach, only I’m able to throw a lot harder because I know I’m only going one inning,” Laylock said. “It’s just like playing hard catch.”
Dobitz said bringing in Laylock, a junior, wasn’t a difficult decision.
“He throws on Saturday against Minot … This was kind of a tune up,” Dobitz said. “We always tell him in a situation like this, be efficient. Get ahead of the batters, so you’re not chasing from behind. He did a good job.”
Laylock went right after Mandan’s hitters, taking all three down on strikes. He may not have even had the chance had the Midgets not rallied in the sixth after a throwing error on ground ball to third base. The ball sailed over the first baseman’s head, and Ryan Jones and Ross Kovacs scored on the error.
“To give up some runs they didn’t earn is tough,” Mandan coach DeWitt Mack said. “Free runs … they start with walks. We can’t do that come tournament time.”
Dickinson senior Cole Frenzel earned the victory in relief of starter Ross Kovacs. Frenzel pitched Zc of an inning, walking one and striking one out.
Dickinson High found itself in trouble after a first inning in which the Midgets gave up four runs. Three errors didn’t help Dickinson as two unearned runs were scored.
The Midgets fought back in the third and fourth innings, scoring three runs to draw within one. Mandan got two more in the fifth and Dickinson cut the deficit to one again with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the fifth.
Doing a variety of damage from the leadoff position was junior Caleb Burgard, who was 3-for-4 with a run batted in and a run scored. Kyle Breen was 2-for-2 with an RBI and two runs scored while Connor McNeilly went 2-for-4 with a double.
Mandan starter Jay Flaa took the loss, allowing three runs on six hits in four innings of work. The Braves were led at the plate by Sam Salveson, who finished 2-for-4 with a double, three RBI and a run scored.
The Midgets finished with four errors in the game, escaping with another conference win.
“(Defense) is something we’ve really been working on,” Dobitz said. “It’s something we need to work harder at.”
Game 2 results were not made available at press time.
Dickinson 7, Mandan 6
Mandan 400 020 0 — 6 5 3
Dickinson 001 222 x —7 9 4
Jay Flaa, Andy Conlon (5) and Steven Serr. Ross Kovacs, Cole Frenzel (6), Stephen Laylock (7) and Michael Steve. W — Frenzel (1-0). L – Flaa. S — Laylock (1).
Highlights: M, Sam Salveson 2-for-4, 3 RBI, 2B, run; Brett Bryan 1-for-3, run, walk. D, Caleb Burgard 3-for-4, RBI, run; Kyle Breen 2-for-2, RBI, 2 runs; Connor McNeilly 2-for-4, 2B.