Split against Brainerd gives Legion first win
Home runs by Dylan Walsh and Kevin Vaadeland powered the Park Rapids American Legion baseball team to a split against Brainerd Monday night at the Area High School diamond.
Brainerd scored twice in the fourth and fifth innings to rally for an 8-6 win in the first game before a 12-hit attack sparked Park Rapids to the split with a 12-4 victory in the second game.
In the first game, Park Rapids claimed a 6-3 lead before Brainerd rallied.
Cody Schirmers singled and scored on a wild pitch as Park Rapids tied the game at 1-1 in the first before a five-run third inning gave Park Rapids a 6-3 lead. RBI singles by Cody Boterman and Dan Ricke and a two-run homer by Cory Odland were the key hits in that inning.
After closing the margin to 6-5 in the fourth, back-to-back solo homers gave Brainerd the lead in the fifth.
Boterman started and took the loss for Park Rapids.
In the second game, Park Rapids built another early lead and held on to earn the split.
Walsh's two-run homer and an RBI single by Ricke gave Park Rapids a 4-1 lead in the first before a single by Walsh and Vaadeland's two-run home run pushed the lead to 6-1 in the second. This game was called after five innings because of darkness.
Ricke started and earned the win as the Legion improved to 1-3 on the season.
Park Rapids will enter a wood bat tournament in Perham this weekend and will travel to Detroit Lakes for a nine-inning game on Tuesday. The Legion will host Little Falls for a doubleheader on Wednesday starting at 5 p.m. and will travel to Brainerd for a doubleheader next Friday.
Nisswa sweeps in opener
The Legion opened the season by dropping a doubleheader with Nisswa on June 10.
Nisswa used a 15-hit attack to win the opener 14-2 in six innings and followed with a 5-1 victory in the second game at Park Rapids.
In the first game, a triple by Walsh and an RBI single by Juberian led to Park Rapids' first run in the third while doubles by Juberian and Dylan Stenberg led to Park Rapids' other run in the fifth.
Walsh and Juberian both went 2 for 3 as Park Rapids had seven hits in that game. Vaadeland started and took the loss, allowing five runs on eight hits with five strikeouts over the first four innings. Danny Pike finished up, allowing nine runs on seven hits and four walks in two innings.
In the second game, Walsh's single and Juberian's double accounted for Park Rapids' lone run in the third. Pike and Vaadeland had the other hits for Park Rapids.
Stenberg took the loss, allowing five runs on seven hits and five walks in 4 2/3 innings. Juberian struck out all four batters he faced in relief as this game was called after six innings because of darkness.