Bad first innings costly for Cardinals
By Jay Davis
A rough first inning put the Cardinals in the hole on Saturday at Legion Memorial Field. After falling behind 4-0 in the top of the first, Mobridge fell 6-0 to the Redfield Pheasants.
“The first inning killed us,” said player/coach Ryan Hoffman.
The Pheasants used five singles and a pair of walks to take the early lead. A rain-soaked field helped the visitors as just one of the five hits made it to the outfield. The other four hits were squib-hit grounders that died on the infield before the Cardinal defenders could make a play.
On the other side, the Cardinals could not solve Redfield pitcher C.C. Christian. Christian scattered five hits over six innings, while allowing just one Mobridge base runner to reach as far as third base.
Scott Hoffman took the loss for the Cardinals. He surrendered 10 hits and six runs over five and one third innings. Jordan Brown came in to finish on the mound.
Jon Schlomer led the Cardinals with a single and a double. Daniel Roberts had two singles and Tim Hathaway had one.
Babcock and Masat led the Redfield offense. Babcock had two hits and two RBIs. Masat had one hit and drove two home. Dickhaut added two hits and scored twice.
After the rains came down Friday night and Saturday morning, the air stayed dry until the middle of the sixth inning when the game had to be called.
The Cardinals lost both ends of a doubleheader in Groton on Sunday, dropping game one 6-4 and game two 11-0.
“We played pretty well,” said Hoffman. “They threw their best pitchers at us in the first game. The second game they threw a soft-tosser and we couldn’t figure him out.”
A bad first inning made things tough for the Cards for the second straight game. Groton scored five runs in the first inning and then held on for the two-run win in the opener. Groton had five hits in the inning, including a Jamie Jorgenson triple and a Tyler Oliver double.
Trailing 6-0, Mobridge rallied with two runs in the fourth. Hathaway singled and Greg Heyne double to get things started. They scored on RBI hits by Derek Veldhuisen and Roberts.
Veldhuisen made it 6-3 when he led off the fifth with a knock and scored on a Scott Hoffman single.
Mobridge had its chance late. Cordell Good Shield led off the seventh with a hit and scored on a Jordan Brown single, but the rally came up short when the Cardinals left the tying runs on base.
Jorgenson was the winning pitcher for Groton. Oliver led the offense with a pair of doubles, two runs scored and an RBI. Mitchell Locke and Ryan Delzer added two hits each.
Jesse Brown took the loss for the Cardinals. He gave up 10 hits and struck out four. He allowed just four hits after the first inning.
Veldhuisen led the offense with four hits and an RBI. Scott Hoffman added two hits. The Cardinals had 12 hits, but left nine men on base.
The Cardinals managed just one hit off Groton’s Zach Harry, while dropping the 11-0 game two in five innings. Groton answered with three runs in the first, third in the third, four in the fourth and the game-ending 11th run in the fifth.
Good Shield suffered the loss for Mobridge, pitching for the first time since returning from active military duty. Scott Hoffman earned the only base hit.
Harry pitched in on offense for Groton with two hits and two runs. Heath Giedt used two hits and a walk to touch home three times. Matt Erickson and Nick Oliver added two runs each.
The Cardinals will try to get back on track when they face Britton for two games in Britton on Sunday. Baseball is live at Legion Memorial Field on Wednesday when the Cards host Clarement, starting at 7 p.m.
Hoffman said he thinks the early-season hassle of having to mix and match the team according to who can play on a certain night and who can’t is over. With player consistency, better play should be just around the corner.
“We’re starting to get all of our players back,” said Hoffman.