Minot runs out of magic against Mandan in WDA Tournament
JAMESTOWN – If Minot hopes to return to the Class A State baseball tournament, their path just got a lot more difficult after dropping their WDA quarterfinal matchup against the Mandan Braves yesterday, 7-3.
Mandan opened the scoring in the first inning when Owen Gress singled with two outs to score Hudson Sheldon, giving the Braves a 1-0 lead. Mandan would load the bases on back-to-back walks before Minot pitcher Carson Deaver struck out Mason Oster to escape the jam.
Minot answered in the bottom half of the second, capitalizing on fielding errors by Mandan. First, an error by Braves catcher allowed Tyler Collins to advance all the way to third from first base. On the next play, Jayden Speraw hit a ground ball to third baseman Gress who was unable to field it, allowing Collins to score the tying run.
A three-run fifth inning would give Mandan all the runs they would need. After Brayden Bunnell scored on an a Minot error, Jordan Binder hit an RBI triple, scoring McCoy Keller. Bunnell crossed home on an Oster single, making the score 4-1.
In the bottom of the inning, Kellan Burke gave the Magicians some life when he drilled a two run homer to right field, scoring Morgan Nygaard and bringing the Minot within a run. There wouldn’t be enough magic though for Minot, as a fielder’s choice and two ground outs ended the inning before anymore runs could cross the plate.
Mandan added three runs in the top of seventh, extending their lead to 7-3 behind runs by Keller, Binder and Oster. Minot’s last stand saw Burke ground into a double play, and Speraw struck out on a foul tip to end the game.
The Magi offense was paced by Burke’s home run, which scored Nygaard. Collins also scored. Noah Stenvold and Mason Zietz each had a stolen base. Deaver took the loss for Minot, giving up four earned runs on seven hits, while striking out five and walking four in 4 1/3 innings. Tyler Buchanan came on in relief, allowing three runs (two earned) on four hits in 2 2/3 innings. He struck out four and walked two.
McCoy Keller got the win for Mandan, going four innings and giving up three runs (two earned) on five hits. He struck out three and walked three. Hudsen Sheldon came on in relief, pitching three shutout innings where he gave up two hits while striking out three and surrendering no walks.
The loss snaps a four-game winning streak for the Magi, who fall to 16-7 on the season. Minot will play against St.Mary’s in the losers’ bracket, where every game is now an elimination game for the Magi. The Saints fell to Jamestown in the late quarterfinal, 4-0.
Today’s game will start at 1:30 p.m. in Jamestown.
Mandan improves to 13-8 on the year and will face off against tourney host Jamestown in the WDA semifinals today at 6:30 p.m.