Blue Devils down Dodgers in doubleheader

Thursday, July 12, 2018
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The Glendive Blue Devils traveled to Laurel on Saturday and came away with a rare series sweep against the perennial league power Laurel Dodgers, taking the first game in dramatic, come-from-behind fashion and then putting the screws to the host team for a blowout win in the second game.

Blue Devils head coach Brent Diegel said his squad was ecstatic after coming away with the road series sweep against the Dodgers.

“The kids were all excited, I know that,” Diegel said. “It’s been a while since we’ve beaten those guys in two straight games, especially at their place.”

The Blue Devils were helped to their two wins over the Dodgers by excellent hitting, a great pitching performance by starter David Skerritt in the second game and much better defensive play than they have had for much of the year. Diegel said that with fewer errors and hot bats, his team is definitely a force to be reckoned with.

“We have cut down on (the errors), but it’s our offense that’s really going right now and I hope that continues, because we can score a lot of runs and win a lot of games that way,” he said.

Offensively, the Blue Devils have been on an absolute tear over the last eight games, outscoring their opponents by a combined run total of 126-34 over that stretch.

“Boy, have we hit the ball,” Diegel said.

Following the series sweep over Laurel, the Blue Devils are now 12-4 in league play, just one behind in the loss column to the Dodgers, who sport a league record of 15-3. Glendive and Laurel will tangle again this Wednesday as the Blue Devils host the Dodgers, and with just a few more league games to go after that, Diegel said his team is wellpositioned to capture at least second if not first place in the league.

“We’ll see how it plays out, but if we were to win out, we could actually take first place,” Diegel said. “Right now, it’d be pretty tough for us not to take second place, so I’m sure we’ll either be first or second here at the end.”

The Blue Devils traveled to Dickinson on Tuesday for a nonleague game before returning home Wednesday for the aforementioned series against the Dodgers. Next up will be the Blue Devils’ annual Culli Tournament, which begins this Friday. The Blue Devils’ first game of the tournament will be at 6 p.m. Friday against the Glasgow Reds.

Blue Devils 14, Laurel 3

The Glendive Blue Devils rode their hot bats and a strong outing on the mound from starting pitcher David Skerritt to a blowout win over the host Laurel Dodgers in their second game Saturday in Laurel.

Skerritt kept the Dodgers’ bats in check for the entire game, going the full seven innings and giving up just five hits and one earned run while striking out four and walking just two.

On offense, the Blue Devils got the scoring going early in the top of the first inning when, after a pair of singles to lead off the game by Cade Dockter and Zach Harris, Pacyn Partridge belted a double into deep center which brought home both his teammates, staking the Blue Devils to a quick 2-0 lead which the visitors would never relinquish.

Laurel tried to fight back in the early innings, picking up a run in the bottom of the first to cut the Glendive lead to one run until Tyler Clapp stepped up with one out in the top of the third inning and smacked a ball over the left field fence for a solo homer. Later in that inning, two more runs would come home on a single by Trenton Lambert, moving the Glendive lead out to 5-1.

By the top of the sixth inning, the Dodgers had picked up two more runs to cut the lead to 5-3, but then the Blue Devils really exploded, sparked by a solo dinger by Dockter to lead off the inning. Five more Glendive runs would come around to score before the inning was over and the Blue Devils picked up three more runs in the top of the seventh for good measure.

Dockter and Skerritt led the way for the Blue Devils on offense, both going 3-5 with 2 RBIs. Lambert and Partridge each also had a pair of RBIs.

Blue Devils 16, Laurel 15

A late-inning rally to overcome a five-run deficit gave the visiting Glendive Blue Devils the win over the host Laurel Dodgers in a wild game one Saturday in Laurel.

Things were looking bleak for the visitors heading into the final two innings, with the Dodgers up 13-8 heading into the top of the sixth and just six outs remaining for Glendive, But then the Blue Devils found their groove while the wheels came off for the home team.

Tyler Clapp started off the sixth inning rally with a single, then was pushed to a second on another single by Jayden Holley. David Skerritt then singled to bring Clapp home and start the rally in earnest. A walk issued to the next batter left the bases loaded with Blue Devils, and then a Dodgers’ error on a ball off the bat of Trenton Lambert allowed Holley to score and Lambert to reach base safely to keep the bases juiced. David Huber then singled to bring in Skerritt, and then a wild pitch brought Jake Rieger to home to make the score 13-12.

The Blue Devils seized the lead on the next batter, as Cade Dockter smacked a double into right which brought in Lambert and Huber and gave Glendive their first lead of the game at 14-13. Two more runs would come in before the inning was over as Clapp singled again to drive in Dockter and then scored himself off another Dodgers’ error.

The Dodgers tried to mount a rally of their own in the bottom of the seventh. They scored two runs off of walks issued with the bases loaded and had the tying run standing at third when Holley, brought in as relief with one out in the inning, induced a ground ball to second baseman Pacyn Partridge for the final put-out and the win.

Just about everybody got in on the action offensively as the Blue Devils tallied 16 hits in the game. Clapp in particular had a field day, going 5-5 with 3 RBIs. Holley, Dockter and Zach Harris also contributed a pair of RBIs each.

“It’s been a while since we’ve beaten those guys in two straight games, especially at their place.”