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BASEBALL: Bemidji Legion drops doubleheader against EGF

Bemidji pitcher Seth Anderson throws during the third inning of an American Legion baseball game against East Grand Forks Saturday afternoon at the BSU baseball diamond. Jack Hittinger | Bemidji Pioneer1 / 2
Bemidji’s Nate Larson slides into second base as a ball drops in between East Grand Forks second baseman Dryden Dragich, right, and shortstop Ethan Mushitz Saturday afternoon at the BSU baseball diamond. Jack Hittinger | Bemidji Pioneer2 / 2

BEMIDJI — A pair of close games both ended in heartbreak for the Bemidji Legion baseball team Saturday afternoon, as East Grand Forks swept the doubleheader at the BSU baseball diamond.

EGF took the first game 3-2 before winning game two 8-6.

Despite the losses both games were better-played than Bemidji’s 13-11 loss to Perham Thursday night, which saw Bemidji commit a slew of errors in the loss.

“We competed a little better in both games today,” Bemidji head coach Nate Blumhagen said. “But it came down to a few plays in the field, which if we would have made them we would have had a lot better chance to win.”

In the first game Erik Fitzgerald and Collin Rutledge both singled and scored in the fourth inning to giver Bemidji a 2-0 lead but EGF scored twice in the fifth to tie the game.

East Grand Forks took the lead in the sixth when Bemidji gave Ethan Mushitz a second chance. Bemidji third baseman Fitzgerald lost a foul ball in the sun with two outs that would have ended the inning. Instead Mushitz hit the next ball out of the park for a home run, giving EGF the 3-2 lead. They would eventually win by the same score.

Rutledge started for Bemidji while Matt Morgan took the loss in relief.

In the second game East Grand Forks jumped out to a lead with a three-run first inning followed by single runs in the third and fourth innings.

However, Bemidji chipped away and eventually tied the game at 5-5 in the fourth inning thanks in part to an interference call on EGF catcher Clarke Peterson.

The catcher was going to pick up a ball to try and throw a Bemidji runner out but ended up picking up the ball with his helmet. That’s an automatic three-base penalty, and it scored three runs to tie the game.

But East Grand Forks added three runs of its own in the seventh inning on a few misplays and ended up winning 8-6.

“We had a couple plays where we would have gotten out of that last inning and the one run we scored would have been enough in the seventh,” Blumhagen said. “We have to get back into playing all the phases of our game a little better.”

Ryan Hirt started game two and threw two innings, while Seth Anderson tossed three innings and Thomas Revering the final two, taking the loss.

With the loss Bemidji falls to 8-12 to end the regular season and is locked into the sixth seed in the district playoffs, which begin Thursday in Perham.

Game 1

East Grand Forks 3, Bemidji 2

EGF 000 021 0 — 3 2 2

Bemidji 000 100 0 — 2 4 2

Game 2

East Grand Forks 8, Bemidji 6

EGF 301 100 3 — 8 10 3

Bemidji 011 300 1 — 6 5 3

Jack Hittinger

Jack Hittinger is the sports editor of the Bemidji Pioneer. He is also the Bemidji State beat writer. He hails from the Great State of Michigan. Read his Bemidji State blog at and follow him on Twitter at @Jackhitts.

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