Free passes, smart hitting helps Dickinson defeat Minot in twinbill openerMINOT — The Minot Vistas were charitable hosts of the Dickinson Roughriders in the opening game of a doubleheader Tuesday at Jack Hoeven Park.
By: Daniel Allar, Special to The Dickinson Press
MINOT — The Minot Vistas were charitable hosts of the Dickinson Roughriders in the opening game of a doubleheader Tuesday at Jack Hoeven Park.
Minot’s four pitchers walked or hit 15 Dickinson batters and the Vistas’ infield compounded the mistakes by committing five errors — plus a few more misplays and botched double plays that turned into fielder’s choices.
The Roughriders took advantage of Minot’s sloppiness and grabbed a 17-7 win. The second game was the polar opposite for the Vistas. Behind a complete-game pitching performance from Ben Magnuson, they won 10-2.
The first game was all Dickinson though.
“Kids are smart. They’re starting to figure out what to do at the plate and it’s showing,” said Dickinson assistant coach Andy Tomanek, whose team had at least two baserunners in each inning. “They’re hitting in advantage counts, they’re taking pitches when they need to take pitches and they’re even fake bunting to move the defense around when they’re not gonna swing at a pitch.”
The Vistas took advantage of Dickinson’s mishaps to lead 3-1 after the first inning.
Leadoff Sheldon Marmon walked and Marcus Quist and Austin Berntson followed with singles. All three would score in the inning as Roughriders shortstop Dylan Skabo made an error and Dickinson starting pitcher Alex Huschka balked.
The Roughriders (9-16) took the lead for good with a five-run third inning. Cleanup hitter James Kary had a two-run triple down the right-field line in the inning after it appeared he was looking to sacrifice runners to second and third.
“We were gonna bunt,” Tomanek said. “When he ended up pullin’ back on the ball, the defense moved around so much — and he hits to the right side — so I just let him hit away. He’s been one of our most consistent hitters all year so it wasn’t any question to let him hit away.”
The sixth inning got ugly for Minot, as the Roughriders sent 11 batters to the plate, scoring six runs on just four hits.
All four of Minot’s game-one pitchers — Hunter Oothoudt, Alex Howell, Ethan Stein and Caleb Fornshell — struggled to find the strike zone.
Huschka, Mason Schiff and Kary had two hits apiece to lead Dickinson, which scored its 17 runs on 10 hits.
Quist, Minot’s second baseman, batted 2-for-3 with a double and scored two runs to lead Minot.
Magnuson helped the Vistas (11-16) salvage the split in the second game.
“It all started on the mound,” Vistas coach Larson said. “When the pitcher’s throwing a lot of strikes, first-pitch strikes, the defense is on their toes ready to react. Ben is a four-year player for us and he’s just what we needed in that second game.”
Dickinson 105 036 3 — 17 10 3
Minot 300 040 0 — 7 6 5
Alex Huschka, Aaron Berg (5) and Brady Dutchak; Hunter Oothoudt, Alex Howell (3), Ethan Stein (5), Caleb Fornshell (6) and Jake Magnuson. W–Huschka. L–Oothoudt.
Highlights: Highlights: D, Mark Erickson 2-3, 2B, HBP, 2 BB, Mason Schift 2-2, 2 BB, HBP, James Kary 2-5, 3B, 3 RBIs; M, Marcus Quist 2-3, 2B, BB, 2 R.
Records: Dickinson 9-16, Minot 11-16.
Note: No box score was available from the second game