Post 14 wins 2Jamestown’s Brandon Gange launched a three-run home run during a seven-run fifth inning, as Post 14 snuck past Mandan 8-7 in the opening game of the Jamestown American Legion baseball tournament at Jack Brown Stadium Friday afternoon.
By: Michael Savaloja, The Jamestown Sun
Jamestown’s Brandon Gange launched a three-run home run during a seven-run fifth inning, as Post 14 snuck past Mandan 8-7 in the opening game of the Jamestown American Legion baseball tournament at Jack Brown Stadium Friday afternoon.
Post 14 took a commanding 8-2 lead after the big fifth frame, while Jamestown starting pitcher Ross Hogan held the Chiefs in check allowing just two runs on two hits to enter the final seventh inning.
But fatigue began to wear on Hogan as he approached 130 pitches in the seventh. An RBI double to deep left center by Mandan’s Reid Jungling started a five-run, two-out rally for the Chiefs.
Immediately following Jungling’s double, Mandan’s Jared Quast tagged Hogan for a two-run homer to cut Jamestown’s lead to just 8-5. Quast’s home run was then followed up by a solo shot to left field by Matt Keller.
With Hogan needing just one out to close the game, Post 14 coach Shane Schoeneberg decided to roll the dice and kept his starter on the hill. Hogan’s game ended, however, just one batter later as Mandan’s Steve Pletan singled to right.
Schoeneberg called for the arm of Levi Gaunska to finish the deal. Gaunska came on and gave up a pair of singles to Sam Salveson and Steve Serr. Serr slapped a shot to right to score Pletan to make the game a one-run contest at 8-7.
Mandan had the tying run on third and the go-ahead on first, in the likes of Salveson and Serr, when Gaunska struck out Mandan’s Brent Stoltz to end the game and earn the save.
“Ross (Hogan) has been looking better and better every start. I wanted him to gut it out,” Schoeneberg said. “We brought Levi in, and he’s been our guy this season to come in and shut the door.
“Ross had a two-hitter going into the seventh. He’s been getting more innings and now he’s starting to pound the strike zone.”
Hogan ended the game allowing seven runs on six hits, five walks and one strikeout.
Post 14 cracked the scoreboard first in the third inning off Chiefs’ starter Jacob Friesz. Post 14’s Danny Paulsrud earned a one-out walk before scoring on a Hogan double to put Jamestown up 1-0.
But Mandan came alive for two runs in the top of the fifth on a bases clearing double by Jason Mellmer. The Chiefs’ Jared Muth and Serr scored on the extra-base hit, after both earned one-out walks.
The Mandan lead was short lived as Post 14 hung seven runs on the board in the bottom half of the inning. Ian Hogan led off with a single to right, and Ross Hogan was then hit by a pitch to set the table for Gange’s three-run bomb.
With the wind blowing out to left, Gange launched a shot to deep left-center to put Post 14 back out front 4-2.
“I thought in (the fifth inning) we were able to catch a couple of breaks, and we’ve been talking about situation stuff like that all year,” Schoeneberg said. “Then Brandon stepped up and hit a three-run shot.”
Friesz then walked the bases loaded and was replaced on the mound by Mellmer. Mellmer walked Jamestown’s Brady Anderson, scoring Ben Walker from third, and then Paulsrud dropped in a two RBI single to right scoring Gaunska and Tim Smith.
Another single by Ian Hogan plated Brady Anderson to put Post 14 up 8-2.
“We got a wake-up call in the fifth inning when they put two runs on the board,” Schoeneberg said. “We’ve gotten a lot better, but we need to be able to put teams away.”
Mandan 9, Coon Rapids 8 (8)
Mandan’s Jason Mellmer doubled to center in the top of the eighth inning, scoring Reid Jungling, as the Chiefs pulled out an extra-inning nail-biter over Coon Rapids in the second game of the Jamestown American Legion baseball tournament.
Jungling had a big afternoon for Mandan, going 3-for-4 at the plate with three runs scored and a three-run homer in the top of the sixth inning. Jungling’s blast to right field pulled the Chiefs out of a two-run deficit to take an 8-7 lead.
Coon Rapids’ Ian Andrews tied the game at 8-8 with a solo shot of his own in the bottom half of the inning, setting up the extra frame.
Mandan had runners on first and third with one out in the seventh, but Brent Stoltz flew out to shallow left and Jared Muth grounded out to second to end the top half.
Coon Rapids threatened to score in the bottom of the seventh, after a double by Mike Latta with one out put the go-ahead run on the bases. But Latta was later gunned down at the plate by Jungling in right field. Jeremy Oakley flew out to end the inning.
Jared Quast went the distance on the mound for Mandan, striking out three batters over eight innings of work. Quast also went 3-for-5 at the plate with a run scored.
The loss was credited to Post 334’s Will Heiser, who entered the game in the sixth inning.
Jamestown 6, Saskatoon 2
After taking the mound in the seventh inning to earn the save against Mandan, Jamestown’s Levi Gaunska took the hill to start against the Saskatoon Giants in the final game of the day.
Gaunska allowed just one run in the first inning and one run in the second, lifting Post 14 to its second win of the day. Gaunska pitched all seven innings, giving up just two runs on eight hits while striking out nine batters and walking a pair.
“I normally don’t strike out too many people. It was kind of surprising,” Gaunska said. “I try to get ahead of hitters and mix my spots. My stuff was on today.”
After plunking the first batter he faced, Gaunska got Saskatoon’s Blake Campbell to ground into a 1-6-3 double play. But Saskatoon’s Cole Bauml followed by drawing first blood for the Giants, belting a solo homer to give Saskatoon a 1-0 lead after one inning.
Post 14 answered back with two runs in the bottom half of the first. Jamestown’s Reid Monson drilled a leadoff single to center and was later sacrificed to second on a bunt from Danny Paulsrud. Ross Hogan then dropped in an excuse me RBI single to left, scoring Monson.
Jamestown’s Brandon Gange was up next and he doubled to right center to score Hogan, giving Post 14 a 2-1 advantage heading into the second.
On the mound for the Giants was Campbell, who went all six innings and shouldered the loss after striking out one and allowing 6 runs on 11 hits.
Saskatoon tied the game in the fourth, after Gaunska allowed a lead off walk to Scott Mostoway. Mostoway took second and third on a pair of passed balls and scored on an RBI single by Rylan Korte.
But as was the case in the first inning, as soon as Saskatoon crossed the plate, Post 14 answered back in the bottom half. Jamestown scored two runs on two hits and three Saskatoon errors to go up for good at 4-2. Jamestown’s Chris Lane and Monson each had RBI singles in the bottom of the fourth.
Post 14 tacked on another run in the fifth behind back-to-back-to-back singles by Ross Hogan, Gange and Gaunska. Gaunska’s single to center scored Hogan to put Post 14 up 5-2.
Jamestown scored its final run in the sixth, after a four-pitch walk to Colin Hillius came back to bite Campbell. Hillius later crossed the plate on a balk, after being sacrificed to second and then sent to third on a single by Paulsrud.
After putting runners on second and third in the seventh, Gaunska battled back to close the door on the Giants. Gaunska tagged out Jordan Spooner who was caught in a rundown between third and home after a dribbler up the middle by Campbell to record the second out.
Gaunska then struck out Bauml for the second time in the game to seal the four-run victory.
“Levi’s been our horse all year. You know he’s always going to mix speeds and mix his spots,” Post 14 coach Shane Schoeneberg said. “Everyone on the team knows that when he’s on the hill we’ve got a chance to win.”
“We’re getting hot at the right time,” Gaunska added. “We haven’t had a great season and we need all the momentum we can get.”
Hogan, Gange, Monson and Paulsrud all finished the game going 2-for-3 at the plate to lead Jamestown. The Giants were led by Guimound who went 2-for-3 and Corte who went 1-for-3 with an RBI.
Post 14 improved to 7-21 overall on the year, a record Schoeneberg said is a little deceiving.
“We’ve lost a lot of close ball games and could be .500 or better,” Schoeneberg said. “We’re getting better and better, but there’s still room for improvement.”
The tournament resumes today with Coon Rapids taking on Saskatoon at 10 a.m. Mandan will then take on Saskatoon at 1 p.m. and Jamestown will face Coon Rapids at 5 p.m.
“Coon Rapids can always hit the baseball,” Schoeneberg said. “We’re going to throw Danny Paulsrud out there and hopefully he throws strikes and we can make some plays.
“We can play with anyone. We’ve just got to believe it.”
Jamestown 8, Mandan 7
Mandan 000 020 5 — 7 7 1
Jamestown 001 070 x — 8 6 3
Ross Hogan, Levi Gaunska (7) and Brady Anderson. Jacob Friesz, Jason Mellmer (5) and Mellmer, Steve Serr (5). W—Hogan. L—Friesz. Sv—Gaunska. HR—M, Jared Quast. Matt Keller. J, Brandon Gange.
Mandan 9, Coon Rapids 8 (8 innings)
Mandan 230 003 01 — 9 14 3
Coon Rapids 510 011 00 — 8 12 4
Jared Quast and Steve Serr. Joe Brisk, Alex Williams (3), Will Heiser (6) and Mike Latta. W—Quast. L—Heiser. HR—M, Reid Jungling. CR, Ian Andrews.
Jamestown 6, Saskatoon 2
Saskatoon 100 100 0 — 2 8 3
Jamestown 200 211 X — 6 11 0
Blake Campbell and Brady Guimound. Levi Gaunska and Jordan Piatz. W—Gaunska. L—Campbell. HR—S, Cole Bauml.
Sun sports writer Michael Savaloja can be reached at (701) 952-8461 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org