Dodge County Stays Alive in Region 5C Playoffs
The Dodge County Diamondbacks beat the Pine Island Pioneers in a hard-fought 6-3 game at Dartt's Park in Owatonna on Sunday. The win keeps them alive in the hunt for a state tournament berth.
Dodge County scored three runs in the bottom of the first inning when the first two batters got on by a walk and a hit batsman.
A wild pitch got lead runner Tyler Krekling to second base and the second batter was hit by a pitch. Krekling stole home for the first run.
Sam Hinsch sacrificed Kyle Nichols into scoring position and, after a strikeout looking and a hit batsman, Cole Krueger collected a two-RBI single on a 2-2 count.
Pine Island answered in the top of the second with Luke Schmidt scoring.
Kyle Nichols singled to open the third for the Diamondbacks and scored on an RBI single by Ben Ortli, who was thrown out to end the inning while trying to steal third base.
The Pioneers had a one-out double by Dan Burniss and, with two outs, Michael Brandt had an RBI double on a 0-2 count.
Pine Island would add another run in the seventh to make things interesting.
After two outs, Zach Hillman singled and Nick Hanson followed with a single. Hanson stole second base. Dodge County tried to pick him off second and he got into a rundown during which Hillman scored.
The Diamondbacks sealed the victory in the eighth inning with two more runs.
After an error opened the inning there was a fly out, then another error allowed Sam Hinsch to gain first base.
Charlie Hinsch had a single and Ortli stroked a two-run single for Dodge County.
Kasey Krekling got the win for the Diamondbacks while going the distance. He threw 113 pitches, 82 for strikes, while striking out four and walking one batter.
Pine Island had seven hits and Dodge County six.
It was a bit of a sloppy game with the Pioneers committing four errors and Dodge County three.
Dodge County plays Wanamingo at 1PM Saturday in Owatonna with the winner playing Stewartville/Racine for a berth into the state tournament.
The winner of the second game plays Waseca on Sunday for the region championship.