Late rally falls short for Le Mars baseball team in playoff opener
SERGEANT BLUFF — The Le Mars Community baseball team scored four runs in the top of the seventh inning, but it wasn’t quite enough as the Bulldogs fell to Sergeant Bluff-Luton by a 7-4 score in a Class 3A substate quarterfinal round game on Friday.
The Warriors jumped out to a 2-0 lead after an inning and added three runs in the third, one run in the fourth and an additional run in the fifth which was enough to hold off the late rally by the Bulldogs.
Cal Eckstaine, Teagen Kasel and Ayden Hoag drove in runs for Le Mars in the final inning as they finally got to starter Bryce Click who fell an out short of a complete game before having to leave the contest due to pitch count limitations. Click gave up four runs, three of which were earned, on six hits and two walks. He finished with four strikeouts while Aidan Sieperda struck out the lone batter he faced to close out the game.
Click helped his own cause by hitting a home run in the game. Sieperda had a single and double for his two hits while Tylar Lutgen had the other multi-hit game for the Warriors.
Hoag joined Evan Pratt and Kole Carpenter for multi-hit games for the Bulldogs.
Hoag ended up taking the loss. He went five innings, giving up all seven runs, but only two of those runs were earned. He gave up six hits and three walks while striking out seven. Brayden Dreckman ended with one strikeout in an inning of relief.
Le Mars finishes the season with a 13-22 record. The Bulldogs graduate just one player off this year’s roster, Cal Eckstaine.
SB-L improved to 28-11 with the win as five of those wins came at the expense of Le Mars this season. The Warriors advanced to play another Missouri River Activities Conference team, Bishop Heelan, in the substate semifinal round.