Shortstop Nathan Dell puts out a runner at second but couldn’t complete the double play Friday night. Photo by Tim Douglass.

The Starbuck Junior Legion baseball team defeated Eden Valley-Watkins in the first round of playoffs at Marthaler Field on Friday night.  

It took much of the game but Starbuck took the lead in the fifth on their way to the 4-2 victory.

The game was tied 2-2 in the bottom of the fifth inning when Jack Majerus got a key hit scoring one run to give Starbuck the lead for good.  Majerus went 2-3 at the plate.

Levi Johnson started things in the fifth drawing a walk. He stole second and then Majerus hit a single on a 3-2 count to score Johnson.  Dylan Alexander followed with another single ground ball into left field to score Majerus to give the Starbuck team a 4-2 lead.  EV-W ended the inning when Noah Jensen grounded into a double play.

But Starbuck was stellar in the field in the 6th behind pitcher Alex Panitzke.  Panitzke induced a 1-2-3 inning on a ground out, a fly out and a line out.  He then induced two ground outs and a strikeout in the top of the seventh inning to seal the victory.  Panitzke pitched all seven innings for Starbuck and recorded the win, allowing five hits and two runs and striking out five.

Majerus and Alexander led Starbuck’s offense, both getting  two hits in the game.   Ryland Martin, Panitzke and Jensen all recorded a hit for Starbuck.

The Starbuck Junior Legion tam improved to  18-4 on the season and 1-0 in the playoffs.  They will take on Morris in the second round tomorrow (Tuesday) at 6 p.m. at Marthaler Field.