Beetles baseball: Alexandria splits with RochesterAlexandria had two one-run games against the Honkers
By: By Matt Bishop, Alexandria Beetles Director of Media Relations and Broadcasting, Alexandria Echo Press
Two runs was all that separated Alexandria and Rochester through as many games earlier this week as the Beetles split two games with the Honkers to move to 2-5 on the young season.
Rochester gave the Beetles a taste of their own medicine in game two of their series, scoring two runs in the eighth inning to take a 3-2 lead and they would hold onto it, winning by the same score.
The Honkers got on the board first in the top of the second inning with an RBI single by left-fielder Angel Talamantes (Rochester CTC). The Beetles responded in the bottom half of the frame with a sacrifice fly off the bat of Ky Burgess (SE Missouri). It was Burgess’ first at bat as a Beetle and he made his impact felt early.
The game remained tied until the bottom of the sixth inning. Patrick Biondi (Michigan) led off with a double to the left-center field gap. The speedy Biondi then advanced to third on a sacrifice by Blair Roberts (Air Force). Matt Lowenstein (Loyola Marymount) followed with a sacrifice fly to score Biondi.
Rochester had some late inning heroics of their own in the series finale as Bryan Lippincott (Concordia St. Paul) was hit by a pitch to lead off the bottom of the eighth. The second-baseman then advanced to second on a single by Bryan Karraker (Central Arizona) and then onto third via a Pedro Ramos (Lewis & Clark) wild pitch. Drew Beuerlein (UNLV) drove in Lippincott with a ground ball out. Carraker then scored on another Ramos wild pitch.
Arik Sikula (Marshall) struck out the side in the bottom of the ninth for the Honker save.
The Beetles showed their resiliency on Monday night against the Honkers, fighting back from five runs behind to win the game 7-6.
The defending Northwoods League champions got on the board early and often against Beetles’ starter Matt Evanoff (Cal) with five runs in the first five innings. The Honkers’ offensive charge was led by first-baseman Matt Dittman (Illinois). The left-handed hitting first baseman went 2-for-2 with a three-run home run and four RBI. Dittman was also walked three times.
The Beetles would not go away as they put a four spot up in the bottom of the sixth inning and took a one-run lead with two more runs in the bottom of the seventh. Graham Spencer (Meridian CC) broke a 0-19 skid with a two-run double in the bottom of the sixth. Taylor Davis (Moorhead St) snapped out of his own mini-slump going 3-for-4 on the day with an RBI.
Rochester tied the game with a lone run in the eighth, but in the bottom of the ninth, Blair Roberts (Air Force) started a rally with a leadoff single. Roberts then stole second base and advanced to third on a wild pitch by Mitch Caster (Wichita State). Brandon Garcia (USC) came up with one out and lifted a fly ball into center field that was deep enough to score Roberts from third base and send the Beetles’ dugout to the field to mob Garcia.
Dan Lazzaroni (Ala-Huntsville) picked up the win in relief for the Beetles, tossing four innings out of the pen, his longest outing of the season.
“He wouldn’t let us take him out,” said Field Manager Scott Chisholm. “His arm felt good and he wanted to keep going out there.”
ROCHESTER 010 000 020 – 3 8 0
ALEXANDRIA 010 001 000 – 2 7 2
ALEXANDRIA PITCHING – Shawn Riesgraf – 7IP, 6H, 2R, 2ER, 1BB, 1SO; Pedro Ramos – L, 2IP, 2H, 1R, 1ER, 1BB, 2SO
ALEXANDRIA HITTING – Patrick Biondi – 1-4, 2B, 1 run; Blair Roberts – 0-3; Matt Loewenstein – 2-3, RBI; Will Miller – 1-4; Brandon Garcia – 1-4, 1 run; Taylor Davis – 1-3; Ky Burgess – 0-2, Sac. RBI; Derek Mattea – 1-3; Graham Spencer – 0-2
ROCHESTER 103 010 010 – 6 7 2
ALEXANDRIA 000 004 201 – 7 9 1
ALEXANDRIA PITCHING – Matt Evanoff – 2 1/3IP, 1H, 3R, 3ER, 5BB, 2SO; Bryce Rippentrop – 2 2/3IP, 1H, 2R, 2ER, 3BB, 1SO; Dan Lazzaroni – 4IP, 5H, 1R, 1ER, 2BB, 2SO
ALEXANDRIA HITTING – Biondi – 1-5, RBI; Roberts – 1-5, 1 run, SB; Lowenstein – 0-2, 3 BB, SB; Miller – 0-4, 1 run, BB; Garcia – 2-4, 2 runs, SB, Sac., RBI; Davis – 3-4, 1 run, RBI; Mattea – 1-4, 2B, 1 run, RBI; Spencer – 1-3, 2B, BB, 1 run, 2 RBI, SB; Birch – 0-3, BB