Mustangs a hit short against Bears
ALGONA – Armstrong-Ringsted was a bases-loaded double from winning a district title on Saturday.
Down 4-2, the Mustangs had a runner on each bag with clean-up batter Brett Thackery at the plate.
Unfortunately, A-R’s playoff run came to an end as Thackery went down on strikes to Garrigan’s Austin Vaske.
Coach Ryan Luedtke points to the first inning where the Mustangs gave up two unearned runs as the key to the game.
“If they don’t get those two runs, it’s a whole different game,” Luedtke said. “The kids fought the whole way though.”
He gave credit to Garrigan for putting the ball in play when they needed to.
Coming off an upset 2-1victory over North Sentral Kossuth, A-R got off to a shaky start.
Jack Bradley started the game with a single off A-R starter Spencer Clausen followed by a sacrifice bunt. An error on second baseman Evan Hagebock allowed Brett Capesius to reach first. A sacrifice fly to left field by Kyle smith brought Bradley home and Dana Miller followed with an RBI double before A-R got out of the inning.
The Mustangs’ first chance to score came in the bottom of the first inning as Ridge Christiansen hit a two-out single and went to third when Thackery reached on an error.
Garrigan scored its third run in the fifth inning on a mental error. With a runner on third and two outs, Clausen gave up a pair of walks. On the second walk, A-R catcher Craig Tigges threw to second base and the runner scored on the throw.
The Mustangs scored their first run in the bottom of the sixth when Christiansen drew a walk, went to second on a passed all and scored on a single by Clausen.
Garrigan put up one final insurance run in the top of the seventh with a pair of singles and a sacrifice fly.
In the bottom of the seventh, Hagebock drew a one-out walk followed by a pair of two-out singles from Tanner LaBore and Tigges-Tigges beat a throw on an infield hit to load the bases. Christiansen drew a walk to bring one run home before Thackery’s final at-bat.
Christiansen was 1-2 with an RBI and two walks, Hagebock was 1-1 with two walks while LaBore and Tigges each went 1-4.
Clausen pitched four innings in the loss. He struck out one batter, walked two and gave up four hits. Christiansen closed out the game, striking out two batters and giving up three hits.
Vaske struck out 10 Mustangs and walked four.
Seniors Christiansen and LaBore both played in their final high school game.
“Both of them put in a lot of hard work and really stepped up in the last half of the season,” said Luedtke of the seniors. “I wish them both well in whatever they do.”