Blue Knights pound Bluejays
WORTHINGTON -- Receiving a pair of pitching gems and pounding out 26 hits Monday afternoon, the Dakota County Blue Knights played errorless baseball and earned a sweep over the Minnesota West Bluejays in a Minnesota Community College Conference S...
WORTHINGTON -- Receiving a pair of pitching gems and pounding out 26 hits Monday afternoon, the Dakota County Blue Knights played errorless baseball and earned a sweep over the Minnesota West Bluejays in a Minnesota Community College Conference Southern Division doubleheader.
Andy Fitzgerald held the Bluejays to four hits in five innings in the opener, as the Blue Knights ripped 15 hits and earned a 15-1 victory.
Dave Geiger topped Fitzgerald's performance in the nightcap, as he twirled a two-hit shutout and fanned six batters in the Blue Knights' 7-0 victory.
Dakota County is now 17-8 overall and 4-2 in league play, while Minnesota West is 3-17 and 0-6, respectively.
Minnesota West travels to Willmar Wednesday to play Ridgewater. The doubleheader starts at 2 p.m.
Dakota County 15, Minnesota West 1 (5 innings)
Will Dahlgren, Evan Lucius and Adam Stuessel each had three hits, and the Blue Knights scored in every inning -- including nine runs in the fifth frame -- to claim a big victory over the Bluejays.
Minnesota West put nine runners on base in the game, but the Blue Knights made all the plays in the field and allowed just one Bluejay to score.
Nick Ahrens started and pitched four-plus innings for Minnesota West before Darrell Kruger came on in relief in the fifth.
Ahrens threw strikes and walked just two batters through the first four innings, but Dakota County busted the game open with a nine-run fifth inning as every player in the lineup reached base.
Chase Brown and Marcus Fitzgerald each touched home plate in the top of the first inning, coming in on a groundout and single by Dahlgren and Lucius, respectively, to put the Blue Knights up 2-0.
Brian Harberts, Andrew DeBoer and Ryan Swanson each cracked a single over the first two innings for Minnesota West, but the Bluejays didn't score until the third frame.
After the Blue Knights added a run in both the second and third innings, Harberts and Ahrens drew back-to-back one-out walks, and Corey Polz later delivered a two-out single up the middle to plate Harberts and make the score 4-1.
Dakota County scored two more runs in the fourth before its big fifth inning, and the Bluejays had just two more baserunners (walks by Reid Strand and Harberts) over the final two frames.
DC 211 29 -- 15 15 0
MW 001 00 -- 1 4 5
Dakota County 7, Minnesota West 0
Dakota County rode the right arm of Geiger and its defense to another victory, as a three-run fourth inning -- sandwiched between four innings with one run apiece -- was enough to propel the Blue Knights past Minnesota West.
DeBoer hurled a complete game for the Bluejays, picking up three of his five strikeouts in a one-two-three second inning.
Brown and Dahlgren -- the one and two hitters in the lineup -- each drove in two runs for Dakota County, while Marcus Fitzgerald, Stuessel and Ben Briesacher each knocked in a run.
Minnesota West had just five baserunners in the game, as Harberts walked in the first inning, and Swanson and Chase Bierman were each hit by a pitch later in the game.
Strand and Lon Eichenberger each slapped a single for the only Bluejay hits. Eichenberger's single to left in the fifth inning gave Minnesota West a pair of runners with one out, but the Blue Knights turned one of their three double plays on the day to get out of the jam.
DC 101 310 1 -- 7 11 0
MW 000 000 0 -- 0 2 2