Another pair of games, another same-day Babe Ruth season sweep.
This time it wasnâ€™t easy, as Valley City returned from Ellendale, N.D., Wednesday night with a pair of comeback District wins, 7-6 and 6-5, for their seventh and eighth straight wins.
â€śWe didnâ€™t play up to our best today, but we fought through it and found a way to pick up two big wins,â€ť Babe Ruth head coach Lance Lukes said. â€śAnd like I told the boys, a W is a W, and we escaped today with two of them.â€ť
Ellendale led 6-4 through four opener innings, but Valley City scored an unanswered run in each of the final three innings.
Ellendale held a 1-0 margin after a frame. Babe Ruth put up three runs in the second, but Ellendale did the same in the home half to tie it up at 3-3. Both tacked on a run in the third, and Ellendale scored two fourth-inning runs for a 6-4 gap. Valley Cityâ€™s two-run top of the fifth tied it up at 6-6, and Babe Ruth managed a run in the seventh for the win.
Dawson Dietrich pitched six winning innings on six runs â€” three earned â€” eight hits, two walks and four strikeouts. Nate Rodriguez held down a hitless seventh to fan two batters.
â€śDietrich worked through some rough spots on the mound to keep things close and eventually came away with the win,â€ť Lukes said.
Cole McGough landed four of 12 Valley City hits in four attempts for a double and a run driven in. Sam Jenson and Garret Suhr picked up two hits each.
â€śMcGough had his coming-out games today at the plate,â€ť Lukes said.
Rodriguezâ€™s seventh-inning sacrifice fly gave Valley City the win in the closer.
McGough batted 2-of-3 to drive in two runs as Valley City picked up only six hits.
â€śCole ended up going 6-for-7 in the two games, and was a bright spot on the day and a spark plug that helped jump-start our offense at times,â€ť Lukes said.
Suhr started on the hill for five runs â€” three earned â€” in three innings on four hits, three walks and two strikeouts. McGough pitched a pair of shutout innings on a single hit. Rodriguez worked the scoreless, hitless sixth and seventh for five strikeouts and the win.
Valley City (13-1 District, 23-6 overall) hosts Lisbon at 5 p.m. Monday for a District-non-District doubleheader. Babe Ruth defeated Lisbon 12-9 and 6-3 June 12 at Lisbon, N.D., and the juniors scored seven runs on Lisbon in June 21â€™s fourth inning to take the Enderlin Tournament Fifth-Place Game, 8-7.
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