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Amateur underway; Mallards, LaMoure pick up first-round victories

John M. Steiner / The Sun Above: Larimore’s Kyle Kleven delivers a pitch against the Kensal Mallards at Jack Brown Stadium on Friday.1 / 3
John M. Steiner / The Sun The Kensal Mallard’s Tanner Lunzman (4), Shaun Hogan (center) and Scott Nelson celebrate a run during the state Class A amateur baseball tournament at Jack Brown Stadium on Friday.2 / 3
John Steiner/The Sun LaMoure’s Nic Moser follows through on a side against Grace City.3 / 3

Joey Gebhardt’s first real outing on the mound this season was in April.

It’s August now and he’s still going strong.

Gebhardt, the right-hander for the Blue Jays and Jamestown Post 14 in the spring and summer, fired a three-hit shutout for the Kensal Mallards in a 6-0 win over Larimore.

“We had the week off after the Legion season ended, so the rest was good. I felt strong,” Gebhardt said. “I was just trying to throw strikes and let the defense do their thing.”

The defense didn’t have a whole lot to do as Gebhardt fanned 11 Larimore hitters.

“It’s fun to come out and play again. This is pretty much our Legion team, so we have a good time,” said Gebhardt, who will play baseball at Bismarck State College next spring.

The win by coach Tom Gould’s Mallards was the first of 21 games this month spread out over this weekend and then the next two — all at Jack Brown Stadium.

Gould’s Greyhounds had won the last three Class A crowns, but they graduated to Class AA this year.

“We want to win,” Gebhardt said. “That’s always the goal.”

Gebhardt fanned the side in the second and fifth innings. Kyle Kleven had two hits for Larimore, but the rest of the lineup combined for one.

The Mallards scored in the first and third innings. The first run batted in didn’t come until Scott Nelson’s ringing double in the fifth inning plated Shaun Hogan to make it 3-0.

Neither Larimore pitcher could do anything with Hogan, who was a perfect 4-for-4 with four singles.

Gebhardt was all over the bases too. He singled in his third and fourth at-bats and walked in his fifth. Tanner Lunzman also had a multi-hit game, going 2-for-4 with a run.

The Mallards play in the first semifinal today at about 2:30 p.m. against LaMoure.

LaMoure 10, Grace City 0, 5 Innings

Adam Wieland knows Jack Brown Stadium well.

Wieland played Legion ball for the Jamestown Eagles and also had a stint with the Jimmies.

He looked right at home for the LaMoure Merchants on Friday, going 3-for-3 with a walk in LaMoure’s 10-0 win over Grace City.

Wieland, who farms around the Montpelier area with his brother and uncle, hadn’t gotten much time on the diamond this summer, but it didn’t show Friday.

“Baseball’s baseball, you know,” he said. “I did get a little BP (batting practice) in today, so that always helps.”

The Merchants (4-2) scored in every inning with a six-run third inning putting it out of reach early. Six different LaMoure players scored in the frame.

Wieland doubled and scored in the second. Then singled and crossed home in third and fourth innings.

“It’s always been a fun place to play,” he said of the Jamestown ballpark. “Had a lot of fun here.”

The Merchants were just a home run from the cycle in the game. Tyler Thielges lined a RBI-triple over the right fielder’s head in the fifth inning. Brett Hample singled twice and walked as the Merchants outhit Grace City, 9-2.

Aaron Stemen pitched three perfect innings for LaMoure then took himself out for later use in the tournament. Beau Diegel worked the last two frames.

Grace City’s hits were from Dusty Lyman and Derek Briss.

Class A State Tournament

At Jack Brown Stadium

First round

Kensal Mallards 6, Larimore 3

Kensal 101 040 0 — 6 13 2

Larimore 000 000 0 — 0 3 2

Joe Gebhardt and Shaun Hogan. Kyle Kleven, Taylor Foss (5) and Sam Heuchert. W—Gebhardt. L—Kleven. 2B-Kensal, Scott Nelson.

LaMoure Merchants 10, Grace City 0, 5 Innings

LaMoure 116 11 — 10 9 0

Grace City 000 00 — 0 2 5

Aaron Stemen, Beau Diegel (4) and Tyler Thielges. Gavin Black, Derek Briss (3), Aaron Backer (4) and Shane Wallace, Preston Hoffman (4). W—Stemen. L—Black. 2B-LaMoure, Adam Wieland. 3B—Tyler Thieles. SB—Aaron Stemen, Travis Black.

Dave Selvig
Selvig has been a sports writer at The Sun since 1999 and sports editor since 2009.
(701) 952-8460