FF splits in Section 8AAPublished 9:01am Wednesday, June 6, 2012 Updated 9:01am Wednesday, June 6, 2012
PARK RAPIDS — The Fergus Falls baseball team will move on in the Section 8AA playoffs, but are just one loss away from being knocked out of the tournament after splitting two games Tuesday.
The Otters were able to rally behind the pitching of Zach Rengel to get a big win over the Perham Yellowjackets 5-2 in game one.
The Yellowjackets had an early lead, but Fergus’ Pete Gaustad hit a solo homerun knotting the game up at 1-1 after two and two thirds innings. Perham’s Jesse Hein was able to respond in kind in the bottom half of the inning launching a solo shot over the fence to regain the lead.
The Otters’ offense found their spark as they were able to put up consecutive two-run innings in the fourth and fifth and stave off Perham the rest of the game.
Fergus’ Rengel got the win going the distance and fanning 10 batters, while his counterpart, Perham’s Eric Brauch, sat down nine in seven innings but took the loss.
Drew Reinertson had the key hit for the Otters as he poked a single into the gap that scored two runs to go ahead of the ‘Jackets.
In game two, Fergus saw the North’s top seed, Roseau, use an early three-run inning to deflate the Otters 6-1 in the section semi-final round.
Fergus jumped out to an early lead with a sacifice fly from Gaustad that scored Abbot Aho in the top of the first. The Rams, who defeated Warroad 5-1, used a two out rally in the bottom half of the inning to score three runs and take the advantage.
The Otters struggled to hit undefeated pitcher Logan Hulst the rest of the game as the Rams moved into the final.
“I don’t know if there was an emotional let down after the Perham game,” Otters Coach Mark Aho said. “It just seemed like the momentum switched to Roseau as their pitcher was able to keep us off balance throughout the game.”
Hulst finished the day with nine Ks and the win, while Fergus’ Tim Rasmussen took the loss after striking out five, allowing two walks and giving up three earned.
The Otters will now travel to Crookston Thursday for a rematch with Perham at noon. The winner of that game will take on Roseau following the previous game.
Fergus Falls 5, Perham 2
R H E
FF 001 220 0 — 5 7 1
PER 011 000 0 — 2 4 1
WP – (FF) Zach Rengel
LP – (PER) Eric Brauch
Battery: (FF) Rengel and Pete Gaustad; (PER) Brauch and Gabe Pankonin.
HR: (FF) Gaustad (3), (PER) Jesse Hein (3).
Roseau 6, Fergus Falls 1
R H E
FF 100 000 0 — 1 5 3
ROS 300 012 X — 6 5 1
WP – (ROS) Logan Hulst
LP – (FF) Tim Rasmussen
Battery: (FF) Rasmusson and Gaustad; (ROS) Hulst and Austin Halvorson.