May 12, 2023 at 12:23 p.m.
Offense the name of the game for CL and opponents
The rain-shortened 2023 baseball season has been a wild ride for the 5-6 Wildcats. In eleven games, they have scored a remarkable 70 runs, but have also given up 89 runs in that stretch.
Duluth Denfeld 16, Chisago Lakes 12
If you like a lot of offense – and the occasional big inning – Wade Stadium in Duluth was the place to be on Tuesday, May 2. After the Duluth Denfeld Hunters scored ten runs in the bottom of the third to take an 11-3 lead, it looked like another blowout loss for the Wildcats. But the Wildcats came back with seven runs in the top of the fourth to cut the lead to 11-10 and tied the game at 12-12 in the fifth. Unfortunately, the Hunters scored four runs the rest of the way and beat the Wildcats 16-12. There were baserunners aplenty, and some bad defense, as the teams combined for 21 hits, 14 walks and 11 errors.
In the top of the fourth, Ty Drury and Logan Thorstad each walked with the bases loaded to force in runs and cut the Denfeld lead to 12-5. Collin Hackl followed with a run-scoring single, and Caden Gibbs grounded into a fielder’s choice for the second out, with another run scoring. Andrew Mandell ripped a single to center to drive in two more runs and cut the Hunter lead to 11-9. Trae Griffin’s fly ball was botched by the left fielder, and Mandell crossed the plate to pull the Wildcats within one.
Denfeld scored a run in the bottom of the fourth to go up by two. In the top of the fifth, run-scoring singles by Thorstad and Gibbs tied the game at 12-12. The tie was brief, however, as the Hunters scored an unearned run in the bottom of the fifth to re-take the lead. And in the bottom of the sixth, a balk, an error and a hit batter contributed to a three-run inning to give Denfeld a 16-12 lead. The Wildcats put two runners on base to start the top of the seventh, on a walk and an error. But after two strikeouts, courtesy runner Dominic Torrez was picked off first to end the game.
Princeton 14, Chisago Lakes 0
Princeton 11, Chisago Lakes 0
The doubleheader loss at Princeton on Thursday, May 4, may have been the most forgettable day in the history of Chisago Lakes Baseball. The Wildcats allowed a total of 25 runs on 18 hits, walked nine and committed seven errors. Offensively, the Wildcats managed just five hits and had four walks. Trae Griffin had two of those five hits in the second game.
Chisago Lakes 6, Osceola 4
The Wildcats finally won a close, relatively low-scoring game, beating the Osceola Chieftains 6-4 last Friday, May 5 at Chisago Lakes High School. A sacrifice fly by Caden Gibbs gave the Wildcats the lead in the bottom of the sixth. Trae Griffin pitched the final 1 2/3 innings to pick up the win in relief, allowing just one hit, walking one and striking out three.
The Chieftains scored twice in the top of the second for a 2-0 lead. In the bottom of the third, with the bases loaded and one out, Leo Nash hit a ground ball that seemed to go right through the second baseman, scoring two runs to tie the game at 2-2. Domonic Torrez later scored on a passed ball in the inning, and the Wildcats led 3-2. A perfectly executed double steal in the top of the sixth tied the game at 3-3, and the batter then singled in another run to give Osceola a 4-3 lead with one out. Trae Griffin came to relieve River Bemlott and got the Wildcats out of the inning without any further damage.
Ian Larsen and Collin Hackl started the bottom of the sixth with consecutive singles. One out later, Ty Drury was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Logan Thorstad was also hit by a pitch, pushing a run across the plate, and tying the game at 4-4. A fly ball to left by Gibbs was plenty deep to score Jack Walker and put the Wildcats up 5-4. Griffin followed with a run-scoring single to left to give the Wildcats a little breathing room. And in the top of the seventh, after a one-out double, Griffin struck out the next two Chieftains to seal the win.
Luke Urhammer started for the Wildcats, allowing two earned runs on two hits. He walked three and struck out three. Lefty Bemlott pitched 1 1/3 innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on three hits, walking one and striking out three before giving way to Griffin.
The Wildcats will host the St. Francis Fighting Saints at 4:30 p.m. today at Chisago Lakes High School. On Saturday, they will head out early in the morning to Cloquet, where an 11 a.m. game with the Cloquet Lumberjacks awaits them. And next Tuesday, May 16, the Wildcats will welcome the North Branch Vikings to Lindstrom at 4:30 p.m, hoping to avenge a 5-4 loss to the Vikings in the season opener.