Northstars win big in Lewistown; host Chargers Tuesday night

Havre goes 3-1 at Lewistown tourney


Last updated 6/22/2020 at 8:09am

The season has been going smoothly for the Havre Northstars American Legion baseball club, though with some bumps in the road along the way, too.

But down in Lewistown at Ryan Sparks Field, Havre had a big weekend. At the end of the tourney, the Northstars put up a 3-1 record, winning 17-5 over the Gillette Rustlers Friday, losing to the Gallatin Valley Outlaws 3-1 to close Friday, beating the Glasgow Reds 18-9 Sunday afternoon, then capping off the weekend on a good note with a 12-2 win over the Livingston Braves Sunday evening, making their overall record 7-13 for the season.

Havre head coach Patch Wirtzberger was glad to see another weekend start off on a high note against the Rustlers.

“We started off against Gillette and kept hitting the ball real well,” Wirtzberger said. “We made enough plays in the field to finish that one early by the run rule, so that was good. We had good pitching in that game from Trenton Maloughney and a good team effort from that one.”

Friday’s opener saw the Northstars start off strong. Senior Tyrel Kjersem put up a stellar game at bat, racking up five hits and leading the charge for Havre. Kjersem put up singles in the first, second, third, fourth and fifth innings for a great rally in the first five innings, as well as seven runs taking place in the fourth. Gillette fought back in the fifth by scoring three runs brought about by doubles from Mason Drube and James Pelton, but the Northstars kept up a great performance to grab the win.

But Friday night’s bout against the Outlaws would be rough, but Wirtzberger saw positives from the game.

“The Gallatin Valley game was another close one and another battle,” Wirtzberger said. “Eli Cloninger pitched a really good game against a good hitting team in Gallatin Valley to keep us in it. We just kept too many runners in poor condition towards the end, but we played a really good ball game and just lost to a really good team in the end.”

The game against Gallatin Valley was another close one for Havre, with most of the battle taking place on the mound rather than at bat. Isaac Richardson opened strong for the Outlaws as the starting pitcher, only allowing one run on four hits, as well as striking out four Northstars, to put up a strong game. Gallatin Valley added three runs in the fourth inning to take lead, with Havre retaliating in the fifth inning with one score, but the Outlaws shut down the Northstars from there.

Glasgow was up next Sunday afternoon and Wirtzberger gave his thoughts on that game, as well.

“A one-bat inning kept us from really blowing up the Glasgow game early,” Wirtzberger said. “The first inning was pretty tough on us, but we were able to keep battling and putting up runs. We were doing the right things in field, so that was good to see.”

Havre ran away with the lead early, putting up big numbers in multiple innings, including a six-run seventh inning, with Tavish Mclean, Eli Cloninger, Quinn Reno and Kjersem leading the offense, while Julian Benson put up a great game at the mound. The victory for Havre was another big one, especially since they started down 8-6 after the second inning, working to climb their way back into the lead and eventually, the win.

Livingston was the last opponent the Northstars faced in Lewistown, which was a game Patch thought was the most complete game of the season so far.

“Tyrel Kjersem just went out there and pitched a fantastic game against Livingston,” Wirtzberger said. “We had good at-bats throughout the whole game and Quinn Reno had an inside-the-park home run, so that was fun. Tavish Mclean hit the ball well again, and Ethan Carlson broke out, as well. That was just the best game we’ve had when it came to team effort all season, so that’s good to see.”

The Braves put up a fight early on, but Havre kept ahead to lead 3-1 after the fifth inning. Then, the Northstars took off, with Julian Benson, Ethan Carlson and Mclean driving Havre forward to put up six runs in the sixth, followed by three scores in the seventh to cap off the weekend strong.

There were some great performances from a variety of Northstars over the weekend. Against the Rustlers, Drake Barreth went 3-3 at the plate. Cloninger put up 18 outs against Gallatin Valley, while Reno went 2-4 at bat. Reno put up a 4-4 batting record against the Reds to lead the team and versus the Braves, Kjersem put up a huge stand at the mound to keep Livingston from catching up.

Next up, Havre will play a tough game against the Great Falls AA Chargers Tuesday at 5 p.m. at Legion Field, where the Northstars look to add some more wins to their season, as well as continue to improve their game. The Northstars then play 10 straight road games over the next two weeks.


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