Midgets’ baseball season begins with sweep of Wahpeton
The Dickinson Midgets returned to the diamond Friday night, beginning their quest for a sixth state championship.
DICKINSON — The 2022 Class A baseball season got underway Friday night with a doubleheader between Dickinson and Wahpeton Dakota Community Bank & Trust Ballpark in Dickinson. Both games favored the Midgets, but with both taking different paths to the same result. The Midgets gave up a big lead in game one and had to win it in walk-off fashion, while a seven-run inning in game two powered them to victory.
Dickinson 9, Wahpeton 8
It appeared the Midgets were going to put together a complete performance in the first game of the year. They built an 8-3 lead going into the seventh inning and only surrendered two hits.
The Huskies’ rally wasn’t the result of many hits, rather walks and errors by Dickinson. Senior Isaac Daley took the mount to begin the seventh, but couldn’t get any outs and loaded the bases before being pulled.
Junior Landon Olson replaced him and hit the first batter he faced. A two-RBI double followed to make it 8-6. The seventh run came in courtesy of a sac fly and the eighth was on a throwing error by third baseman Britton Cranston. Five runs were scored by Wahpeton in the top of the seventh to extend the game another half inning.
Luckily for Dickinson, they were having success at the plate, so a walk-off win almost felt imminent. Junior Davin Seibel drew a walk to lead off the bottom of the seventh and represented the game-winning run. Olson followed with a sac bunt to move Seibel over to second and into scoring position.
Seibel then stole third base to put himself in prime position to score. Leadoff hitter Carson Weiler stepped to the plate with a chance for the walk-off win. He fouled off multiple pitches and was in a 3-2 count when he swung at the final pitch that rolled just in between home plate and the pitching mound.
Weiler took a full swing, but the result was more like a bunt, fitting for the Midgets’ style of play.
On the mound for the Huskies was Gavin Schroeder, who scooped up the ball and made a last ditch effort to toss it to his catcher with Seibel sprinting home. The ball didn’t arrive in time and Seibel scored standing up, giving Dickinson a walk-off victory in the first game of the season.
While the win came in thrilling fashion, it could’ve been wrapped up much earlier and saved some arms for the Midgets.
“We’re in a situation where we have a lot of games, a lot of non-conference games, so guys are going to have to go on the mound and throw 20-40 pitches and still keep their focus over that time,” Dickinson head coach Pete Dobitz said. “We can not waste opportunities on the mound because it may not hurt us that game, but it could hurt us down the road.”
Weiler finished 3-for-5 at the plate with the walk-off RBI. Sophomore Kaeden Krieg was 2-for-2 with 1 RBI.
Senior Drew Kovash, who also started on the mound and went 2 ⅔ innings with four strikeouts and zero earned runs, hit a two-run single in the first inning to cap off a four run-inning for the Midgets. As a team they had seven hits.
WHS 100 002 5 — 8 3 3
DHS 400 121 1 — 9 7 4
DHS: Weiler 3-5 1 RBI, Krieg 2-2 1 RBI, Kovash 1-1 2 RBI, Berg 1-3 1 RBI, Sebeil, Haich Daley, 1 RBI
Pitching: Kovash 2.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 4 K, 3 BB; Kudrna 2.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, Haich 1 IP, 1 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 K, 2 BB; Daley 3 R, 2 ER, 2 BB; Olson 1 IP, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 BB
Dickinson 9, Wahpeton 3
The Midgets didn’t take full control of game two until the fourth inning when they hung seven runs on the Huskies.
A few bench players took the field in the second game, one being sophomore Jace Kovash. Batting ninth, he blasted the first home run of the season and his career over the left field wall for Dickinson in the fourth to begin their rally. It was a two-run shot as they retook the lead 4-3.
“He’s been swinging the bat really well,” Dobitz said. “He’s been fielding well and we’ll have to see what happens with Landon. Troy might have to help out behind the dish, then Jace will get more time at shortstop.”
Olson, who started the first game at catcher and subbed into the second, left the game after his hand got hit on a swing and Berg took over catching duties for the remainder of the game. The other player that spent time behind the plate was junior Chase Selle, who started the second game.
The Midgets kept the line moving as the next five batters reached and scored off of base hits and fielding errors. It quickly became 9-3.
Weiler started game two on the mound and delivered three scoreless innings with four strikeouts. Troy Berg and Hunter Deschamp followed and between the three, only allowed one hit.
In his first at-bat in the second inning, Kovash hit a two-RBI double to right field, finishing with three RBI for the game. Daley had two on a 3-for-3 performance at the plate and junior Aidon Rodakowski had one on two hits in two at-bats.
Dickinson will return to the field Monday for another home contest against Watford City.
WHS 000 30 — 3 1 2
DHS 110 7X — 9 11 3
DHS: Daley 3-3 2 RBI, Kovash 2-2 3 RBI, Rodakowski 2-2 RBI, Bast 2-3, Krieg 1-3 RBI, Berg 1-1
Pitching: Weiler 3 IP, 4 K, 0 ER; Berg 1 IP, 1 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 BB; Deschamp 1 IP, 2 K