Morris VFW now 6-0 in District 5
The Morris VFW baseball team took another step towards winning the District 5 regular season title with a 12-8 win over Starbuck Tuesday at the Minnewaska High School field. Post 5039 is now 6-0 on the season with four regular season games remaining.
Morris scored in each of the first five innings, but Starbuck kept it close.
Alex Erickson got things started when he hit the first pitch of the game off of the left center field fence for a triple. Tanner Berning singled in Erickson and Tyler Hansen singled as well. Ryan Beyer then hit a home run over the left field fence for a 4-0 Morris lead.
Starbuck scored an unearned run in the bottom of the inning off of Morris starter Eric Riley before Post 5039 regained their four-run lead with a run in the second. Erickson walked, went to third on another Berning single, and scored on a ground out by Hansen.
Starbuck answered with three runs in the bottom of the inning to draw to within 5-4.
In the top of the third Riley and Brady Valnes opened with singles and moved to second and third on stolen bases. Jon Jallo then singled to score both runs. Later in the inning Berning added another two-run single, scoring Travis Rinkenberger who had singled and Erickson who had reached on a fielder's choice.
Starbuck added another run in the bottom of the inning, but Morris tacked on two more runs in the top of the fourth on an error and a bases-loaded walk to Erickson which scored Evan Schultz.
Three more Starbuck runs in the bottom of the fourth made the score 11-8 in favor of Post 5039. Morris added an insurance run in the fifth when Hansen led off with a single and scored on a Riley triple.
Hansen relieved Riley in the bottom of the fifth and pitched three scoreless innings to pick up his second save in as many games.
All nine starters had at least one hit as Morris pounded out 19 hits in the game.
Morris also played well defensively, committing just one error, with shortstop Erickson and second baseman Nate Gibson handling several chances each and making some nice plays in the field.
The second game of the night was shortened to just three innings because of a town team game that followed. This game ended in a 4-4 tie. Mitch Kill pitched the first inning for Morris and Rinkenberger finished the game with two innings of scoreless relief.
Offensively, Hansen drove in two runs with a double and Cole Riley added an RBI as well. Others to hit safely for Morris were Ethan Bruer with a double, and Mitch Kill with a single.