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There isnâ€™t much that can change a baseball gameâ€™s momentum more than a big home run.
But after allowing a two-run game-tying dinger to deep centerfield in the third inning of the teamâ€™s second game with Lidgerwood Friday at Charlie Brown Memorial Field, Valley City Post 60 pitcher Austen Meyer was determined to keep his chin up.
â€śYouâ€™ve just got to come back and get the next guy,â€ť Meyer said.
Instead, he and the rest of his team responded in the best way possible.
Meyer allowed no more runs and let only five more batters reach the rest of the game. The offense did its part with with seven runs in the bottom of the fourth inning and three more in the bottom of the fifth to end it at 13-3.
Post 60 also won the earlier game 9-3. Both counted towards the Section 1 standings.
â€śI just felt like we had a good focus in both games,â€ť said Valley City assistant coach Todd Roth, who ran the team in with Jason Beilke out of town. â€śEven in the second game, when they put together a pretty good inning (in the third) and we had a kind of a down inning, we were able to not cave in. We came back, hung seven the next inning.
â€śWe smelled the blood in the water and went for the kill. We took care of it.â€ť
Offensively, Valley City got started in the bottom of the second, when Chase Carpenter had a single to left field to reach base. He advanced to second when Spencer Meyer was hit by a pitch, which led to some slight drama on the field.
As Meyer was jogging to first base, Lidgerwoodâ€™s pitcher approached the baseline and the two briefly exchanged words. Meyer then turned around near the base, which resulted in both players being ejected from the game.
Jesse Hochstetler then took Meyerâ€™s place on both the basepaths and in centerfield.
Brett Stearns then walked to load the bases and andrew Glaser was hit by a pitch, scoring Carpenter. Hochstetler and Stearns later scored on passed balls to go up 3-0.
With the game tied in the fourth inning, Carpenter again got things started for Valley City.
He and Hochstetler both walked. Stearns then doubled to deep left field as eight of the first nine batters that inning reached base. The first seven all scored.
Austen Meyer then helped his own cause in the fifth inning when he hit a line drive to center field that was bobbled and allowed Glaser and Ben Sorenson to score. Meyer made it to third on the fielding error and then scored the game ending run on a single by Jaden Keys.
Meyer finished the game with seven strikeouts in five innings with only three hits allowed.
Post 60 had only six hits, all from different players, but also had 10 walks.
In the first game, Valley City had early offense that helped get past Lidgerwood.
Valley City scored three runs in the bottom of the first and two more in the third to go up 5-0.
The team then hit around the lineup in the fourth inning and scored the first four batters of the inning.
Valley City finished with five hits but seven walks. Josh Magnuson led the team withone hit, two walks and three runs scored. He was also one of four players, along with Keys, Carpenter and Spencer Meyer, to finish with two RBI.
Carpenter went 2-3 with one walk and a double.
Keys continued his recent success on the mound. He finished with a complete game and kept hitters missing with his curveball, which led to 13 total strikeouts.
Post 60 continues its season at 6 p.m. today in Kindred.