North Star Recap
Posted 5/12/16 (Thu)
The North Star Baseball Tournament has come to an end, seeing the regular season champs win the post-season title as well. The Bellevue Bruins, a team who gets it done in every aspect of the game, handled every team they faced including the Mayville State Comets in the championship game 14-1.
The news wasn’t all bad for MSU. The fact that they advanced to the final game of the tournament from Bracket B means that they qualified for the NAIA tournament. The Comets entered tournament play as a #6 seed and were able to string together three wins; one versus Dakota State and two out of three versus Jamestown. Against DSU Mayville exploded for 19 runs and Junior Zach Mahoney went the full seven on the bump allowing just the two runs on four hits. Jose Guzman had his biggest game of the tournament going 3-5 with a home run and five RBI.
The offense died down a bit for MSU in their second game of the tournament. Taking on Jamestown the Comets only put up three runs, but an outstanding performance from Kody Rock allowed the hat trick to be enough for his team. The junior from Canora, Saskatchewan worked quickly and efficiently, keeping a hard hitting Jimmies lineup off balance and unable to get comfortable. Rock allowed two earned runs and just five hits to the Jimmies who had gone for 15 and 15 the day before. Kalton Agnes relieved Rock in the 8th and shutout the Jimmies for a six out save.
In MSU-Jamestown round two the Jimmies unleashed the offense early, plating three in the 1st and one in the 2nd. The early lead and a “bend but don’t break” performance from Tanner Dahl was enough to give the Jimmies a 5-2 win. Dahl allowed just one earned run despite scattering eight hits. Bismarck native Quinn Irey may have had the best tournament of anybody in Jamestown. He went 2-4 in the Jimmies’ second game versus MSU with two base knocks, two RBI’s and a run scored.
With the Jamestown win Sunday the Jimmies forced a play in game to face Bellevue in the championship. Once again they would have to face Mayville State. Rowdy Dove singled and scored for MSU in the second and homered in the third. Heading to the home half of the fourth the Comets had built a 4-0 lead. But just when it seemed like MSU might run away with it, Jamestown plated three. The Comets answered with two but the Jimmies came right back bottom five with another three. With momentum seemingly shifting the way of the hometown team, Brady Nygaard led off the top of the sixth with a solo shot on a 1-0 count. The Comets would tack on one more for insurance and more dominant relief pitching from Kalton Agnes allowed MSU to advance to the championship game with a 9-6 win.
The extra games and taxation on the bullpen prevented the Comets from hanging with Bellevue. But the berth in the final game assured their season would live to see another day in the NAIA tournament.