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Bemidji VFW takes pair from Detroit Lakes

Fresh off Monday's doubleheader sweep at Detroit Lakes the Bemidji VFW heads to Fergus Falls today for a pair of games beginning at 1 p.m.

Bemidji will take a 4-0 record into the twinbill following Monday's 11-3 and 28-14 victories.

In Monday's nightcap Bemidji scored 10 runs in the second inning to forge a 10-2 advantage but saw Detroit Lakes answer with 12 runs in the next three frames to regain the lead.

The VFW countered, however, with eight in the fifth and settled the issue with nine in the seventh.

"The way I look at it, you are never out of a game," VFW coach Brad Johnson said. "It seems that it takes a while for this team to get going. But when our opponent scores it serves as a wake-up call.

"What we're trying to figure out is what we need to do to not dig ourselves a hole."

Escaping that hole was made easier by the 13 walks a trio of Detroit Lakes pitchers issued and the eight errors made by its defense.

Half of the errors and four of the free passes came in the second when Bemidji scored 10 runs. The inning also featured Nick Hovila's RBI single, a run-scoring double by Cody Jenkins and Drew Peterson's 3-run round-tripper.

Not able to enjoy the prosperity, however, the VFW gave up five runs in the lower second, a single run in the third and six in the fourth and trailed 13-11. The VFW regained the advantage in the upper fifth when singles by Billy Baumgartner, Trent Baker, Ryan Hirt and Connor McNallan helped lead to eight runs.

In the seventh the VFW salted the win as RBI singles by Hovila, Baker and McNallan highlighted a 9-run inning.

Sam Dwyer, Hovila and Baker all saw mound duty and Baker earned the victory with 4.1 innings of relief.

Another big inning led to the 11-3 win in Monday's opener. The VFW scored eight runs in the sixth to snap a 3-3 tie and collect the victory.

Once again, Detroit Lakes helped Bemidji's cause by issuing eight walks, including three in the decisive stanza. The frame also featured doubles by Dwyer and Drew Peterson and singles off the bats of Mitch Buckanaga, Dom Hayle, Cody Jenkins, Hirt, Nick Conner and Peterson.

Bemidji opened the scoring when Hayle's double and Hirt's single combined for a first-inning run. In the fourth Hirt walked and eventually scored on a double-play grounder and an error, Hayle's walk and Hovila's sacrifice fly produced a run in the fifth.

Peterson relieved Hirt in the fifth and was the winning pitcher.

First Game

VFW 100 118 0 - 11 12 2

Detroit Lakes 100 200 0 - 3 2 1

Hirt, Peterson(5, W) and Buckanaga. K-4, BB-5

Ziegler, Olson (5, L) and Frederick. K-2, BB-8

Second Game

VFW 0(10)1 080 9 - 28 18 1

Detroit Lakes 2 5 1 600 0 - 14 14 8

Dwyer, Hovila (2), Baker (4, W) and Buckanaga. K-8, BB-11

Johnson, Gross (2), Gailfus (5, L) and Gailfuss, Long (5). K-2, BB-13

Pat Miller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

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