On Tuesday night, the Starbuck Jr. Legion baseball team had the bats rolling in its Northeast Sub-State tournament first-round win over Kerkhoven.
Starbuck tallied 14 hits in seven innings on its way to a 12-3 win. Nathan Dell went 4-for-5 at the plate with an RBI. Blake Andreas, PJ Johnson, Jack Larson and Alex Panitzke recorded multi-hit games.
The offensive breakthrough started in the top of the first inning when Starbuck hung seven runs on the board. Six consecutive batters reached base, all of which came around to score. Starbuck hit around the order and chased the Kerkhoven starting pitcher out of the game after his second inning of work.
Dell reached base on a fielder’s choice while Larson got on with a single in the top of the second inning. Both came around to score on a two-RBI single from Panitzke.
Dell got the nod to start the game on the pitching rubber and lasted 2.1 innings. He allowed two earned runs on four hits while striking out three batters. Johnson came in for relief in the bottom of the third inning.
Johnson recorded the final 13 outs while surrendering one hit and zero earned runs. He struck out eight Kerkhoven batters and walked one.
Up next for Sartbuck is top-seeded New London-Spicer, who will host the second-round game on Thursday. NLS earned the top seed in the seven-team double-elimination bracket and advanced to the second round with a bye. Elimination round games will be played at a neutral site in Atwater.
STARBUCK 720 021 0 - 12
KERKHOVEN 011 100 0 - 3
STARBUCK HITTING- Blake Andreas 1-5, 2RBI; Jack Majerus 1-3, 2R; Dylan Alexander 1-4, 2RBI, BB; Nathan Dell 4-5, R, RBI; PJ Johnson 2-5, R, 2RBI; Jack Larson 2-4, 3R; Alex panitzke 2-3, R, 2RBI, BB; Austin Ballhagen 0-4; Austin Weber 1-4, 2R;
PITCHING- Dell 2.1 IP, 4H, 2R, 2ER, 3BB, 3K; Johnson 4.2 IP, 1H, 1R, 0ER, 1BB, 8K