Baseball team wins only conference game last week


CHRISTINE VREEMAN/SPRING VAL- LEY TRIBUNE Reid Kruegel hauls in a fly ball for the Bulldogs.

CHRISTINE VREEMAN/SPRING VALLEY TRIBUNE Nick Ramaker of GMLOK fires a pitch to a Glenville-Emmons batter.

CHRISTINE VREEMAN/SPRING VALLEY TRIBUNE Lucas Heusinkveld snags a Glenville-Emmons line drive in a GMLOK win Tuesday, April 9.

CHRISTINE VREEMAN/SPRING VALLEY TRIBUNE GMLOK’s Devin Carr leaps for a deep Glenville-Emmons fly against the home run fence.
By: 
Chad Smith

The Grand Meadow/LeRoy-Ostrander/Kingsland baseball team split the two games it played before winter made its return last week.

The Bulldogs started the week with a road loss at Chatfield by a 9-6 score on Monday, April 8. They returned to Kingsland the next day and came up with a 10-5 win over Glenville-Emmons/Alden-Conger. The game against Schaeffer Academy set for Friday, April 12, was postponed due to winter weather and will be part of a doubleheader on May 7. GMLOK baseball is 3-1 (1-0 Southeast Conference) on the season.

Week starts with loss

The Bulldogs started the week with a road trip to Chatfield for a non-conference matchup with the Gophers. The challenge of a road game was magnified by the GMLOK boys being a little shorthanded.

 “It was a back and forth game for us,” said GMLOK head coach Dakota Rostad. “Although we were down three starters due to FFA and class trips, our next-man-up mentality kept the game close. Senior Dylan Lunning started the game for us and threw three very good innings.

 “We ran into trouble in the fourth inning with three fielding errors that led directly to baserunners and Chatfield scoring opportunities. We did get a good night at the plate, especially for Drew Copley, who’s gotten off to a solid start at the plate this spring.”

Copley went three for four with a single, two doubles and four RBI. Reid Kruegel went two for four at the plate with two singles.

Comeback win

The GMLOK baseball team was back in Kingsland the next day for a Southeast Conference matchup against Glenville-Emmons/Alden-Conger. The Bulldogs doubled up the Wolverines 10-5 but had to come from behind to pick up their third win of the season.

GMLOK jumped out to an early 2-0 lead after the first inning. G-E/A-C came up with four runs in the top of the fourth inning and took a 4-2 lead. The visitors led 5-2 after adding another run in the top of the fifth inning. However, the Bulldogs comeback began with four runs in the bottom of the frame, taking a 6-5 lead. GMLOK added four more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning and closed out the Wolverines in the top of the seventh for the win.

Kruegel was a perfect three for three at the plate, drawing a walk, scoring twice and stealing three bases. Dustin Copley went one for three with a walk, two runs scored and stole two bases. Drew Copley also had a hit in three at-bats, drawing a walk, driving in a run while scoring twice and had three stolen bases.

"Tonight, we got to see a great outing from pitcher Christian Millette,” Rostad said. “The senior relief pitcher came in during the top of the fourth inning with nobody out and the bases loaded. He was able to get out of the jam with minimal damage, allowing two runs to score while stranding two more of them on base. From there he commanded the strike zone and, with help from the defense, we were able to shut down their offense.

 “The key for us was being aggressive at the plate and on the base paths. As a team, we had 14 stolen bases to go along with nine hits. It will be key for us to continue to be aggressive on all sides of the ball." 

Tyler Lair hurled five innings for the Wolverines, taking the loss while giving up five earned runs and six hits. Lair also led his team at the plate, going one for three while smacking a double and drawing a walk.

Schedule

The conference game with Spring Grove set for Tuesday, April 16, has been postponed and will be part of a doubleheader on May 10 at Luther College in Decorah. The Bulldogs are scheduled to be at Plainview-Elgin-Millville on Thursday, April 18. They’ll stay on the road Monday, April 18, with a non-conference game at Southland.