Volunteers bow out of Class A legion tourney with loss to hard-hitting Devils Lake

Devils Lake lost via the walk-off on Wednesday against Beulah, and the Storm wanted to leave little chance of that happening again.Devils Lake posted six runs in the top of the first inning against Dickinson on Thursday, leading to an 8-3 victory...

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Dickinson pitcher Morgan Wardner delivers to home plate against Devils Lake on Thursday at Southside Ballpark and Astoria Field. (Press Photo by Parker Cotton)

Devils Lake lost via the walk-off on Wednesday against Beulah, and the Storm wanted to leave little chance of that happening again.
Devils Lake posted six runs in the top of the first inning against Dickinson on Thursday, leading to an 8-3 victory in an elimination game at the North Dakota Class A American Legion state baseball tournament at Southside Ballpark and Astoria Field.
“I like the way we started,” Storm head coach Randy Ostermiller said. “They really set the tone. … They wanted to make a statement right off the bat, and they did.”
The loss ends the Volunteers’ season, but the Storm will advance to play Bismarck in the second round of the elimination bracket at 1 p.m. Friday.
“We put up just as many zeros as they did,” said Joe Binstock, the head coach from No. 4-seeded Dickinson. “They just had that one inning, and it hurt us pretty good.”
The Storm, the East Region’s No. 3 seed, notched five straight hits in the opening inning, and six overall, including run scoring doubles from Landyn Swenson, Lance Anderson and Jordan Swanson.
Swenson, the leadoff hitter, finished 3 for 4 with three RBI in the game.
“It felt really good right away, getting on their pitcher,” Swenson said. “You always got to get on the pitcher right away, and if you do, he gets a little frustrated, everybody’s feeling good right away, and that carries on the rest of the game.”
Dickinson’s Morgan Wardner took the loss for the Volunteers after pitching the whole way with 10 hits allowed and four walks with three strikeouts.
“Morgan settled down after that first inning,” Binstock said. “He threw great after that, but it hurts when the six-spot goes up right away. … They just hit the ball. Morgan threw everything he had. His curveball was working, and he was ready to go. They just came out swinging.”
Dickinson’s Jadyn Grasl led off the bottom of the first frame with a walk and later scored on a sacrifice bunt from Joey Pavek with the bases loaded.
Swenson added an RBI single in the third inning, but the Volunteers cut into the lead again in the bottom half.
After two quick outs, Tristen Brunk was hit by a pitch and he later scored on a three-base throwing error by Noah Widmer on a ball off the bat from Pavek. Dawson Dutchak and Justin Berger followed with walks, and Dickinson’s third run scored after Jacob Greene couldn’t handle a ball put in play by Colton Jones. 

“I think we grow stronger,” Brunk said, “because when we’re down by that much and we fight back like we just have, that’s kind of been the story of our season. Sometimes we come out on top, and sometimes that happens.”
Devils Lake added their final run in the sixth inning when Lance Anderson scored on a passed ball.
Wardner supplied the team’s only hit, a single in the first inning.
Although Dickinson’s season ends, Brunk said he and a few teammates expect to be with the Dickinson High varsity next spring, and they’ll be able to take this experience of playing older, more experienced squads with them.
“Playing older kids, you get a great experience from that,” Binstock said. “I’m happy that they can battle, and in the coming years, they’ll come up there too.”

Devils Lake 8, Dickinson 3
DL 601 001 0 - 8 10 3
D 102 000 0 - 3 1 2
Noah Widmer, Parker Schmid, Landen Hall and Ryan Haahr. Morgan Wardner and Dawson Dutchak.
W–Schmid. L–Mardner. HR–None.
Highlights: DL, Landyn Swenson 3 for 4, 2B, run, 3 RBI; Jacob Green 2 for 3, 2 runs; Lance Anderson 1 for 3, 2B, 2 runs. D, Morgan Wardner 1 for 3; Tristen Brunk run; Joey Pavek run; Jadyn Grasl run.

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