BISMARCK, ND – It took nine innings in game one of Friday’s double header to clench a 9-8 walk-off victory over the Duluth Huskies. Mike Farnell drove in the gaming winning run on a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth with only one out.
Undefeated Larks Sweep Huskies in Double Header
Post-game sound available here.
The 1:05pm game was a continuation from Thursday night’s scheduled game, suspended due to severe thunderstorms. The tied ballgame picked up in the second inning with bases loaded but the Larks were unable to capitalize on the opportunity.
The Huskies scored one run in the top of the fourth inning to take a five to four lead. It didn’t last long as Bismarck battled back in the bottom of the fourth inning by scoring two runs. Mike Farnell and Matt Warkentin got things going with back to back singles, and Kyle Stevens was hit by the next pitch to load the bases. A slow infield groundball allowed Farnell to score from third and Warkentin later scored on a sacrifice fly off of the bat of Brandon Barna.
The Larks lead didn’t last long because the Huskies were able to scratch across two runs in the top of the sixth inning when Augie Issacson scored his third run of the game and Bradley Norton scored his only run of the game for Duluth.
Carson Bartels started the bottom of the eighth inning with a leadoff double down the leftfield line and he would later score the tying run on a Warkentin single up the middle to make it an 8-8 ballgame.
A go-ahead homerun in the top of the ninth put the Huskies up 9-8, but the Larks never backed down as Barna started the bottom half of the inning with a single into right field and would later score on a Bartels bases loaded walk. Farnell would then drive in the game winning run on a sacrifice fly to left field to walk it off in the bottom of the ninth inning and improve the Bismarck Larks record to 3-0 on the season.
Game two of the double header threatened to be a repeat of Thursday night’s suspended game – delayed almost two hours due to rain. The skies cleared allowing play just after 9:15pm. That carried their momentum from game one. Scoring one in the first, two in the second and then exploding for six runs in the third was all the run support they needed to get the 11-3 victory.
Game two got off to a late but hot start when both team’s leadoff batters in the first inning got on base via the walk, stole two bases and scored a run to make it a 1-1 ballgame going into the second inning. Back-to-back walks would get the Larks started in the bottom half of the next inning and Jacob Nesbit and Barna would later score on a sacrifice fly and an infield groundball.
Bismarck would pour on six runs in the third inning with Stevens, Warkentin, Nesbit, Barna, Joe Rydel and Spencer Gillund all scoring while only recording one hit in the inning. Making it a 9-1 game after three innings, the Larks went into cruise control and added runs in the seventh and eighth innings to eventually win 11-3 to improve to 4-0 on the season. Colby Davis, Danny Kuhn and Tristen Hudson pitched for the Larks and did a phenomenal job only allowing three runs on two hits.
The Bismark Larks will be back in action later today when they travel for the first time of the year to take on the St. Cloud Rox. The scheduled start time for the game on Saturday is 6:05 p.m. and on Sunday, first pitch is scheduled for a 4:05 p.m. start time.
The Bismarck Larks are a proud affiliate of the Northwoods League, the proven leader in development of elite college baseball players. The Larks mission is to use FUN to make a difference in the lives of our families, businesses, players, and communities we serve. This is accomplished with a commitment to putting fans first and providing high quality family entertainment at affordable prices. In 2017, the Larks sold out 27 of their 36 home games in Bismarck Municipal Ballpark, home of Dakota Community Bank and Trust Field, and were named the Northwoods League’s Organization of the Year.
The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Entering its 25th anniversary season, the Northwoods 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 190 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (TOR). 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.