Jacob Blair threw five scoreless innings to get the win in the Minnewaska baseball opener over West Central on Thursday.
Photo by Mark Beasley.

April 21 at Minnewaska

Minnewaska 7 West Central 0 

The Minnewaska baseball team finally made their 2022 season debut on Thursday, hosting a doubleheader at Marthaler Field.

Game one would be against West Central. After that the Morris Tigers would be the opponent in the second game.

Jacob Blair was on the hill for the Lakers and had a great day, giving up just two hits over five scoreless innings.

The Minnewaska offense scored its first runs of the season in the second inning. Jack Majerus singled, then went around the bases on a balk, a stolen base and another balk. Not the textbook way to score a run, but it counts. Nathan Dell also singled and scored in the inning, giving the Lakers a 2-0 lead.

Two walks and four consecutive singles led to three more Minnewaska runs in the bottom of the third inning. Dylan Alexander and Jack Larson drew walks to lead off the inning. Singles followed from PJ Johnson, Jack Majerus, Hunter Johnson and Nathan Dell. Alexander, Larson and Majerus all would score.

Minnewaska would tack on single runs in the fourth and fifth innings while Blair and Dell held the Knights in check, giving the Lakers a 7-0 victory in their opener. 

WCA    000 000 0 – 0 2 0 

Lakers  023 110 x – 7 14 0

HITTING – Minnewaska:

Jacob Blair 3-4 r, Torii Johnson 1-4, Dylan Alexander 0-2 r, Jack Larson 0-2 r, PJ Johnson 1-3 rbi, Jack Majerus 3-3 r-3 rbi, Hunter Johnson 2-3 rbi, Nathan Dell 3-3 r rbi, Connor Stein 1-3  

PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-so)

Jacob Blair (W) 5-2-0-0-4-7

Nathan Dell       2-0-0-0-1-2

April 21 at Minnewaska

Minnewaska 6 Morris 5 

Game two of the doubleheader pitted Minnewaska against their rivals to the west from Morris.

Jack Majerus staked the Lakers to a lead in the bottom of the second after getting a walk, then advancing to third on a double by Nathan Dell. Majerus came home on a bad pitch and Minnewaska had the first run.

Morris responded with three runs in the top of the third after the inning began with four-straight Tiger singles off of Minnewaska starter PJ Johnson.

Minnewaska knotted the score at 3-3 in the bottom of the third when Torii Johnson led off the inning with a single. Dylan Alexander and Jack Larson followed with consecutive doubles, allowing Johnson and Alexander to score.

Morris recaptured the lead in their next at bat, getting two singles to start the frame, followed by a one-out double that plated both runners.

In the bottom of the fifth the Lakers once again tied the score. Dylan Alexander tripled to lead off the inning, then scored on a single by Jack Larson, who would score to tie the game later in the inning.

Torii Johnson came on in relief of PJ Johnson in the seventh inning, after PJ had held Morris scoreless in the fifth and sixth innings. 

Torii held the Tigers in check, giving the Lakers a chance to win in the bottom of the seventh. Jack Larson singled to lead off the inning and went to second after a Morris error on a sacrifice bunt attempt. Larson went to third on a walk, then scored the winning run when Nathan Dell lined a two-strike single to left field, allowing Larson to tag up and score.

Dylan Alexander and Jack Larson each had three-hit games in the big win while Torii Larson got credit for the win on the mound.

The Lakers have road games on Monday and Tuesday, at NL-S and Benson, then return home on Thursday for a game with Sauk Centre.  

Morris  003 200 0 – 5 11 1 

Lakers 012 020 1 – 6 10 0

HITTING – Minnewaska:

Torii Johnson 1-4 r, Dylan Alexander 3-4 r-2 rbi 2b 3b, Jack Larson 3-3 r-2 rbi-2 2b, PJ Johnson 1-3, Jack Majerus 0-3 r, Nathan Dell 1-4 rbi 2b, Connor Stein 1-3 

PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-so)

PJ Johnson           6-11-5-5-2-5

Torii Johnson (W) 1-0-0-0-0-1