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Mitchell pitchers shine in split

Through 14 games, the bats have been doing most of the work for the Mitchell Post 18 Legion baseball team. On Wednesday, Post 18's two starting pitchers--Briggs Havlik and Baley Miller--left head coach Luke Norden pleased with the work on the mou...

Mitchell Post 18's Koby Larson (4) flips the ball over to second base to get the out on Sheridan Troopers' Andrew Ratty (16) during the first game of a doubleheader on Wednesday at Cadwell Park in Mitchell. (Matt Gade/Republic)
Mitchell Post 18's Koby Larson (4) flips the ball over to second base to get the out on Sheridan Troopers' Andrew Ratty (16) during the first game of a doubleheader on Wednesday at Cadwell Park in Mitchell. (Matt Gade/Republic)

Through 14 games, the bats have been doing most of the work for the Mitchell Post 18 Legion baseball team.

On Wednesday, Post 18's two starting pitchers-Briggs Havlik and Baley Miller-left head coach Luke Norden pleased with the work on the mound as Mitchell split a doubleheader with Sheridan, Wyoming at Cadwell Park. Mitchell won the first game 6-2 and fell in the second game 3-2.

"By far, it was our two best starting pitching efforts of the summer," Norden said. "I was really happy with the guys who threw tonight."

Havlik picked up the win in the first game for Post 18, allowing eight hits, two runs (one earned) with one strikeout in seven innings pitched.

"Briggs did a great job of getting out of jams," Norden said. "They had baserunners all night but we did a great job of getting out of situations."

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Post 18 struck first and took a one run lead after the bottom of the third inning. Sheridan responded with a run in the top of the fourth inning to tie the game before Mitchell broke the game open with a five-run fifth inning.

"We did a good job executing in our big inning," Norden said, adding Mitchell had a pair of bunt singles in the bottom of the fifth inning.

Jed Schmidt and Sam Michels each had two hits and one RBI to lead the team, while Elijah Pommer, Carson Max, Drew Kitchens and Jared Miller all finished with one hit. Mitchell finished the first game with eight hits, two errors and seven runners left on base, while Sheridan had eight hits, two errors and seven runners left on base.

In the second game, Post 18's bats struggled to get the offense going as the team finished with only three hits in the loss. Offense has carried Post 18 early in the season as Mitchell scored 10 or more runs in 10 games, but the team flipped the script on Wednesday.

"We need to find a middle ground," Norden said. "If we're going to pitch the ball as well as we did, there's no reason to not have two wins for as good as we were swinging the bats before."

Baley Miller took the loss on the mound for Post 18, despite having what Norden called "our best start of the season." Miller allowed three runs off eight hits in seven innings pitched with two strikeouts.

"He threw 74 pitches in seven innings and was real efficient," Norden said. "After the first inning, they didn't really threaten."

Sheridan scored three runs in the top of the first inning and that proved to be enough to hold on for a 3-2 win. Post 18 scored one run in the bottom of the fourth and fifth innings. Spencer Neugebauer went 2-for-3 with a triple, while Schmidt and Bryce Geraets each had an RBI in the loss.

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Post 18 finished the game with no errors and six runners on base, while Sheridan matched Post 18 in the field, playing an error-free game and leaving six runners on base.

"It is really enjoyable to watch clean baseball," Norden said of the two games. "Both teams did a great job of playing defense and playing crisp baseball. I wish we could have added a little more offense."

Mitchell hosts Pierre in a doubleheader at 2 p.m. today at Cadwell Park in Mitchell.

"Hopefully, we see the same pitching and defensive output," Norden said. "We just need to bring the sticks."

Mitchell Post 18's Drew Kitchens (1) fires over to first for an out on Sheridan Troopers' Blake Godwin (13) during the first game of a doubleheader on Wednesday at Cadwell Park in Mitchell. (Matt Gade/Republic)
Mitchell Post 18's Drew Kitchens (1) fires over to first for an out on Sheridan Troopers' Blake Godwin (13) during the first game of a doubleheader on Wednesday at Cadwell Park in Mitchell. (Matt Gade/Republic)

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