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Mitchell's Pierson named to all-state first team

Dylanger Pierson's offseason work paid off for the senior in the spring baseball season.

The senior focused on his hitting with Dakota Wesleyan University, where he will play for the Tigers next school year.

Pierson was the lone Mitchell player named to the all-state first team, an award voted on by coaches. Junior Matt Larson and senior Derek Miller also earned all-state honors for the Kernels.

Pierson was selected as a designated hitter, but also pitches and played first base throughout the season. He was second in Class A with 25 RBIs and had a batting average of .371, including six doubles and one home run for the Kernels.

"He's constantly been getting better since the beginning of last year," Mitchell baseball coach Luke Norden said of Pierson. "Our guys at the top of the lineup have to get on base for him to be able to drive them in, so you have to give them some credit. But Dylanger has done a good job in his spot in the lineup to bring those guys in."

Miller, who joins the Mount Marty Lancers in the fall, was named to the second team as a pitcher. The right-hander threw 35 innings for Mitchell, giving up 32 hits, walking 10 and striking out 20. Miller finished the spring season with a 3-2 record and an earned run average of 3.00.

"He threw quite a few innings for us and every time out, he got a little bit better," Norden said.

Larson was an honorable mention selection after batting .304 with four doubles, six RBIs and 11 stolen bases.

"Matt continues to get stronger physically," Norden said. "Last year, he had a great season in football and wrestling and his hard work has helped him in baseball."

All-state honors

First team: Brandon Valley - Jacob Adams (shortstop), Nic Peterson (center fielder); Sioux Falls Washington - Justin Miller (outfielder); Mitchell - Dylanger Pierson (designated hitter); Pierre - Alex Gray (catcher); Sturgis - Tyler Covell (utility player); Aberdeen - Lucas Lorenz (shortstop); Huron - Matt Johnson (center fielder); Brookings - Thomas McMacken (first baseman).

Second team: Brandon Valley - Lucas Lunstra (left fielder); Sioux Falls Roosevelt - Jordan Hofer (catcher), Jake Bear (infielder); Yankton - Sheldon Gant (shortstop), Lane Sawatzke (first baseman); Rapid City Central - Tucker Berg (shortstop); Aberdeen - Greyson Neuharth (left fielder); Watertown - Cole Julius (shortstop); Sioux Falls O'Gorman - Alex Linneman (third baseman), Sam Nesbitt (first baseman); Pierre - Ben Leidholt (first baseman).

Honorable mention: Sioux Falls Lincoln - Parker Bullard (outfielder); Mitchell - Matt Larson (outfielder); Sioux Falls Roosevelt - Kyle Schroeder (outfielder); Yankton - Brad Ulmer (outfielder); Pierre - Connor Ryan (second baseman), Justin Berheim (center fielder); Rapid City Central - Brady Wauer (third baseman), Scott Dingus; Rapid City Stevens - Cullin Gilbertson (second baseman); Huron - Damen Robish (first baseman); Watertown - Ricky Hannasch (center fielder).


First team: Brandon Valley - Luke Bauske; Sioux Falls Lincoln - Dayton Braley, Nolan Burchill; Sioux Falls Roosevelt - Josh Baumgart; Pierre - Isaac Grode.

Second team: Brookings - Corey Roach; Harrisburg - Dalton Allen; Mitchell - Derek Miller.

Honorable mention: Sioux Falls Roosevelt - Stuart Baruth; Sioux Falls O'Gorman - Justin Kautz; Rapid City Central - Brady Wauer; Aberdeen - Nick Goeman; Watertown - Connor Fransen, Ben Holter.

Brooke Cersosimo
Brooke Cersosimo is The Daily Republic's sports editor.