BEMIDJI -- Even after nearly two years without a game, the Bemidji High School baseball team didn’t show much sign of rust Friday.
Following a long pandemic-induced layoff, the Lumberjacks swept Moorhead by scores of 10-0 and 9-4 at the BSU baseball field, winning via the 10-run rule after six innings in game one.
“It’s fun to be back on the field with them, and today we got off to a great start,” head coach Mike Fogelson said. “We threw five different pitchers and they all looked really solid, so it was fun to see that. There were a lot of strikes being thrown by all five.”
Isaiah Biehn fanned 10 batters in his game-one start and allowed just one hit over four innings. Aaron Heger overcame a rough first inning in game two and struck out five over five innings while surrendering only one hit with two runs.
“We have a lot of really good pitchers,” Fogelson said. “It’s hard to really put them in order. … We expected really good things from them and basically we saw that today. They all looked really good. It’s just exciting to see that many solid arms coming out of our group.”
BHS was not lacking in the offensive department either, totaling 24 hits for the day.
“I thought we did a pretty good job at the plate for not having seen really any pitching yet this year,” Fogelson said. “We put a lot of balls in play, so I was really happy with that too.”
The Jacks racked up nine stolen bases on the base paths, and as further evidence of how complete their opening-day outing went, they did not commit an error all day.
“Probably the most impressive part about the day was our aggressiveness on the bases. We really pushed the envelope on the bases,” Fogelson said. “For our first day out, we were really clean defensively. Just a lot of really positive things coming out of the first day.”
To start the day in the afternoon game, Josh Nyberg’s RBI single in the second inning scored Grant DeClusin, the eventual game-winning run. A sac fly and an error scored two more in the third.
Bemidji broke the game open with a five-run fourth with run-scoring hits from Brandon Lussier, JD Kondos and Heger. Lussier scored on an error during Heger’s triple and Heger on a wild pitch.
An error brought Colt Uhlenhopp home in the sixth before Nyberg’s sac fly plated the game-clinching 10th run.
Lussier struck out three in relief over the final two innings and conceded only one hit.
Biehn and Kondos each finished with two hits to lead the team.
The Spuds (1-3) struck for their first two runs of the day in the opening frame of game two.
The Lumberjacks (2-0) scored five runs with two outs in the second inning to catapult to a 5-2 lead. Six straight hits brought home one run at a time, capped by Heger’s second RBI triple of the day.
Isaiah Biehn drove in his brother Ethan Biehn for the second time in the game during the fourth inning before scoring on a sac fly that made it 7-2. Moorhead closed the gap to 8-4 in the sixth, but it was not enough in the end.
Kondos and Nyberg each pitched an inning in relief to seal the win.
Five Jacks totaled two hits for the game: Isaiah Biehn, Lussier, Kondos, Heger and Nyberg.
Bemidji will return to the BSU diamond for a single game against Brainerd at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 20. The team won’t need to wait as long for that game as they did Friday’s.
“This was probably one of the hardest-working offseason groups we’ve ever had,” Fogelson said. “They just kept working. They worked another 365 days. The time and effort that they’ve put in, it’s just been so much. It’s just really exciting to be back on the field with them.”
Bemidji 10, Moorhead 0 (six innings)
MHD 000 000 -- 0-2-6
BHS 012 502 -- 10-11-0
WP: I. Biehn (4 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 10 K, 2 BB).
LP: Swenson (3.1 IP, 7 H, 6 R, 2 K, 2 BB).
Bemidji 9, Moorhead 4
MHD 200 002 0 -- 4-5-1
BHS 050 211 X -- 9-13-0
WP: Heger (5 IP, 1 H, 2 R, 5 K, 4 BB).
LP: Quade (3 IP, 8 H, 7 R, 3 K, 1 BB).