Larks Cap Off Road Trip With Win Over Beetles
Micah Beyer throws seven innings of no run baseball to give Larks their ninth victory of season.
ALEXANDRIA, MN – The Willmar Stingers might of changed their team name and stadium tonight but it didn’t change the result both the Stingers and the Bismarck Larks are used to seeing when the two teams take the diamond.
The Larks defeated the Alexandria Beetles, also known as the Willmar Stingers, by a final score of 2-1 to remain undefeated against the Beetles this season.
In a tribute to the great fan base that exists in Alexandria, the Stingers took on the Beetles mascot for the night. The Alexandria Beetles were the seventh team to join the Northwoods League at the time of their expansion back in 2001.
A 2-1 final score indicates a pitching duel and, well, that’s exactly what the sold out crowd at Knute Nelson Memorial Park got.
For the Beetles (9-9), it couldn’t of been more fitting as the Alexandria, MN native Blake Stockert completed six innings of one run baseball. The only bump in the road for Stockert came in the top of the fourth inning when he issued a two-out walk to Scooter Bynum and then a RBI double to Luke Waldek that one-hopped the left field wall.
The one run cushion was enough for Larks (9-9) starter Micah Beyer. In his third start of the year, Beyer tossed seven innings of shutout baseball giving up just four hits while striking out three Beetles hitters.
This start for Beyer wasn’t rid of adversity though.
The adversity showed up in Beyer’s first inning of work as well as his last inning of work in the bottom of the seventh inning. In the bottom of the first, Beyer worked around a leadoff walk by Marcus Still followed by a single from Josh Bissonette ultimately getting Nolan Bumstead to groundout to end the threat.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Beetles put another runner 90 feet away from tying the game when Caleb Ledbetter stole second and advanced to third on an errant throw by Larks backstop Quinn Irey. Beyer recorded a loud third out as Eddie Estrada laced a ball right into the glove of Noah Sadler.
After seven innings of play with both of the starting pitchers’ nights finished the game stood at a 1-0 tally in favor of the birds of Bismarck.
The Larks were in search of an insurance run in the top of the eighth inning after they loaded the bases off the Beetles bullpen. This is when Stone Kelly threw a wild pitch that got away from Beetles catcher Eli Wilson scoring Wyatt Ulrich.
The two runs proved pivotal as the Beetles took advantage of the extra chances the Larks gave them in the bottom of the eighth inning when Trenton Stoltz came out of relief. Bissonette scored due to an infield single off the bat of Rob Emery combined with a throwing error from Larks second baseman Mitch Gallagher.
With the score at 2-1 in the bottom of the ninth inning, the Larks turned to Nick Boyles to get the team back to .500 on the season.
Boyles did just that by striking out the first two Beetles hitters he faced and getting Tyler Murray to fly out to Ulrich in left to end the game.
The 2-1 victory not only put the Larks back at .500 in their overall record, but also gave them a .500 record on the team’s longest road trip of the season at 4-4.
Considering the fact that there was a four game losing streak in the midst of this road trip, the Larks will take it.
The Larks head back home as they will be met by two sellout crowds at Bismarck Municipal Ballpark. The first pitch in tomorrow night’s ballgame against the Duluth Huskies is set for 6:05pm to set into motion a six game home stand.
The game will be broadcasted live on KFYR-TV and, as always, can be listened to on mixlr.com/larksbaseball.
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The Bismarck Larks are apart of the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The 23-year old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 20 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, more than 170 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including two-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champion Ben Zobrist (CHC) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM) and Lucas Duda (NYM). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. For more information, visit www.northwoodsleague.com or download the Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play