The Valley City Babe Ruth baseball team didn’t necessarily play badly in its final game of the annual Pizza Corner Classic.
The problem in its 10-0 loss to Steele afternoon was that a few unlucky breaks added up and left the team with a 6th place finish in its own tournament.
The two-day tournament wrapped up Sunday at Charlie Brown Memorial Field and featured teams from southwestern North Dakota.
“We had a snowball effect,” said coach Lance Lukes. “We made a mistake, we made another one after that, and it led to a big inning for them.”
The big inning he referred to was the second inning, in which Valley City allowed four runs.
The leadoff hitter rached base on an error, which was followed by a single to center field. A hit batter then loaded the bases before an infield groundball scored the first runner. Another hard single to center brought in another run.
A third straight ball to centerfield was fielded badly, allowing the two more runs to score.
Errors remained an issue throughout the game. Valley City finished with seven errors. Of the seven runs that starting pitcher Jonah Wolla allowed, only two were earned.
Valley City had few problems getting runners on base, drawing three walks and finishing with five hits, but couldn’t find a hit to bring them in.
In the bottom of the second inning, Casey Engelhard reached base on a two-out single and got to second on a passed ball. He eventually was the final out on a ground ball that made contact with him between second and third base.
Jordan Magnuson later reached second with two outs in the bottom of the fourth, but the inning ended without a run.
Wolla finished the game with three innings pitched and one strikeout. Relief pitcher Jake Miller threw the final two innings with four strikeouts, but struggled with walks in the fifth inning and allowed three runs.
Valley City also had a 13 year-old team in the tournament that went 0-3 in its three games.
The Babe Ruth team plays road games in LaMoure and Ellendale this week.