Roughriders open at home with blowout win over Regina
Dickinson's bats didn't stay quiet for long.After managing just three runs in a doubleheader against Williston to start the season, the Roughriders put together 11 hits in an 11-2 win over Regina (Saskatchewan) Friday at Southside Ballpark and As...
Dickinson’s bats didn’t stay quiet for long.
After managing just three runs in a doubleheader against Williston to start the season, the Roughriders put together 11 hits in an 11-2 win over Regina (Saskatchewan) Friday at Southside Ballpark and Astoria Field in their first game of the Border War tournament.
After an early run in the first inning - Treven Hopfauf hit a sacrifice fly to score Tanner Ouellette - the Roughriders (1-2) went scoreless in the second but added two more runs in the third and three in the fourth, followed by a five-spot in the fifth.
“We put up 11 hits, so it’s nice to see the bats show up, start the season off good,” said Hopfauf, who went 1 for 3 with two RBI. “We have good chemistry as a whole team, so we’re hoping for this all season long.”
The Roughriders got hits from eight batters and played error-free defense behind pitcher Brock Messer.
Messer allowed seven hits and seven walks with one strikeout in the game. He got himself into trouble on occasion by getting two quick outs and then allowing baserunners - this was the case in the first, fifth and seventh innings - but the only damage done against him was Carter Ramler’s two-run single with the bases loaded in the top of the fourth to cut Dickinson’s lead to 3-2.
“(Messer) was struggling there for a little bit,” head coach Cory Hansen said, “but once you give him a little bit of a cushion, he was throwing strikes a lot more. The offense helped him out quite a bit.”
The Roughriders had built a 3-0 lead in the third after Hopfauf singled to score Ouellette again, and Sam England followed with an RBI single to score Hopfauf, who had taken second on a wild pitch.
After Ramler plated the Angels’ only runs of the game, the Roughriders responded in the bottom of the fourth with an RBI double from Ouellette, a sacrifice fly from Cam Jorda and a single from Shawn Steffan to take a 6-2 advantage.
Dickinson put the game out of reach in the fifth when, with one out, Austin Boswell doubled to score two runs, Ouellette hit a sacrifice fly, Jorda notched an infield single for an RBI and Steffan doubled to center to score another run, which chased Regina’s starter Zach Lehner from the game.
“Today, we were hitting the ball hard, and there’s not much more you can ask for,” said Ouellette, who went 2 for 2 with a pair of RBI and three runs scored. “The bats were just there for us, and we came up big.”
On a day when Jorda and Tristin Brunk turned a double play up the middle in the third and England smothered a couple grounders at third base, Ouellette made the defensive plays of the day in center: a headlong dive to get the team out of the fourth inning with two runners on, as well as a sliding catch to his left for the second out of the fifth.
“Those line drives right at you are pretty hard to judge in the outfield,” Ouellette said, “and I don’t play outfield very much, and with that sun, I just did the best I could.”
The Roughriders continue play in the Border War today with a doubleheader against Rapid City Post 320 at 2 p.m. followed by Bismarck at 7 p.m.
After the team’s all-around performance on Friday, Hansen had reason for optimism moving forward.
“Pitching and defense is where it’s at,” he said. “Eventually you’re going to run into an arm that’s going to shut down your bats at some point, and you’ve still got to pick it, and you’ve still got to pitch. Today, we put too many guys on, and we got away with it, but we’ll clean that up and get better as the season goes on.”
Dickinson 11, Regina 2
R 000 200 0 - 2 7 1
D 102 350 X - 11 11 0
Zach Lehner, Parker Filazek and Robert Ermel. Brock Messer and Chase Ballard.
W–Messer. L–Lehner. HR–None.
Highlights: R: Carter Ramler 2 for 3, 2B, 2 RBI; Brandon Metz 2 for 3, run; Robert Ermel 1 for 3, run. D: Tanner Ouellette 2 for 2, 3 runs, 2 RBI; Cam Jorda 1 for 2, 2 RBI, run; Shawn Steffan 2 for 4, 2B, 2 RBI; Treven Hopfauf 1 for 3, 2 RBI, run; Sam England 2 for 4, run, RBI; Trisin Brunk 1 for 3, run; Chase Ballard 1 for 2; Benson Kramer 2 runs; Austin Boswell 1 for 3, 2 runs, 2 RBI.