Newt Johnson’s second homer in as many days isn’t enough as the Larks are handed their 7th loss of the season from the Rox
ST. CLOUD, MN – Younger siblings often know what it’s like to be beat up on by their older siblings. Unfortunately for the Larks in this case, they’re the younger sibling and the St. Cloud Rox, well, they’re the older sibling.
The Bismarck Larks dropped their third straight game losing 7-3 in their eighth and final game against the St. Cloud Rox.
The Rox (7-12) simply have the Larks (10-12) number.
In Bismarck’s inaugural season, they fell seven out of eight times to St. Cloud. The 1-7 record against the Rox will go down as the worst record against any divisional opponent this season.
St. Cloud got on the board first in tonight’s ballgame when Larks starter Carson Selin plunked Trevor Putzig with the bases loaded in the bottom of the second inning. Selin avoided further damage by striking out Ricardo Sanchez and getting Cameron Eden to fly out right to end the inning and keep the game at 1-0 in favor of the Rox.
After a third consecutive quiet inning for the Larks offense against Rox starter Jake Stevenson, the bottom of third inning turned out to be the difference in the game. The Rox exploded for six runs with three separate two-run hits. Michael Busch had the first two-run hit and Sanchez had the third and final two-run hit.
The middle of the two-run hits was a ball struck to the left side of the infield by Putzig. With one run already scoring, Larks shortstop Luke Waldek knocked the ball down deep in the 5-6 hole and realized that Busch had made too wide of a turn at third. This led to a failed rundown and Busch touching home plate for another Rox run.
It was 7-0 after three innings and the Larks found themselves in an early hole.
The bullpen of the Larks would do exactly what they needed to do anytime a team finds themselves trailing early. Thanks to Logan Johnson and Chris Roycroft the Larks kept the ballgame right where it was at the rest of the way.
Johnson entered the ballgame in a bases loaded situation as Selin’s night was complete after just two and one-thirds innings of work. Johnson did give up back-to-back hits, but bounced back to record the final two outs of the bottom of the third.
Johnson wouldn’t allow another run throughout his next three innings. In just his third appearance as a Lark, Johnson went three and two-thirds innings allowing just one earned run with three strikeouts and one walk.
Roycroft impressed in his Larks debut by working a clean seventh and eighth inning. Roycroft’s final line included two innings with no runs allowed and just one hit. The Villa Park, IL native retired five Rox hitters in a row at one point.
As for the Larks offense, they were only able to muster up three runs on just four hits.
Noah Sadler tallied his first extra base hit since July 9th with a triple to the right-center field gap in the top of the fourth inning. Sadler scored later in the frame due to a Stevenson wild pitch.
The next runs to come across and score came in the top of the eighth inning when Newt Johnson found the power stroke for the second time in the series. Johnson lined a two-run shot over the left-center field fence to bring the Larks within four at 7-3.
A comeback effort attempt came in the top of the ninth inning when Luke Horanski doubled with one out, but Jeff Mayes and Connor Perry struck out back-to-back to end the ballgame.
Stevenson backed up Kyle Boser’s starting performance from the previous night matching Boser’s six innings of work. Stevenson allowed just one hit all night while striking out and walking four batters apiece.
The Larks are glad to be finished with the Rox for the 2017 season. Bismarck heads to Waterloo to take on the Bucks for the middle two games of the current six game road trip.
This is the Larks first trip to Waterloo since June 13th. The first pitch is set for 7:05pm from Riverfront Stadium.
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The Bismarck Larks are a member of the finest developmental league for 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, 180 former 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 portal. For more information, visit www.bismarcklarks.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Larks as your favorite team.