Busy weekend for Mudcats, Blue Ox
The Bemidji Mudcats and Blue Ox face busy weekends. The Cats head to Brainerd today for a 3 p.m. twinbill with the Brainerd Bees. They stay over and take on the Nisswa Lightning in a noon twinbill tomorrow.
The Blue Ox will have the home field advantage tomorrow when it hosts Crookston in a 1 p.m. doubleheader at BSU.
The Cats, 12-4, are coming off a 9-3 Arrowhead League win at Nashwauk which kept them in second place at 6-2. They trail only Duluth which reached 4-0 with its sweep at Bemidji last weekend.
Manager Neil Huewe can take his pick of his mound staff with no further action until a July 2 game with the Blue Ox and no league games until going to Grand Rapids July 7.
Most likely to start this weekend will be Paul Fenner (3-0), Brian Murphy (2-0), Doug Peterson (1-3), Dan Bauer (0-1) or Keenan Humphrey (1-0). Matt Stasch will lead the bullpen.
The Blue Ox will be meeting its first Norman-Polk League opponent of the year, a team that swept last year's doubleheader 7-6 and 1-0 at Crookston.
Gross, Brian Jamieson (1-1) or Matt Fossen (1-2) are the top mound choices.
It will be the only meeting this year with Crookston. The Ox has home-and-home games with Ada and will not face East Grand Forks, the third Norman-Polk team.
The two leagues, which compose most of Section 16-C, were a single circuit to begin last year before dividing with Bemidji, Roseau and Warroad forming the Northwest Border League.
Warroad leads that circuit at 2-0 with Bemidji 2-2 and Roseau 0-2.
The Blue Ox is 3-5 overall.