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Northstars get rolling on Canadian road trip

As the month of July soon arrives, the Havre Northstars American Legion baseball club will be looking to find its groove heading into the final month of the regular season. On a road trip to Canada this past weekend, the Northstars looked like they have found a rhythm as they went 2-0 against the Vauxhall Spurs and 2-0 against the Fort Macleod Royals.

"I think we pulled it together and played really well," Havre head coach Patch Wirtzberger said. "Some of the best baseball we played all season so I was pretty pleased with the effort."

The Northstars started the weekend with a 7-3 win over the Vauxhall Spurs Friday night. The Northstars got going early as they took the lead in the top of the first inning. With the bases loaded, Conner McKay scored on a groundout to give Havre the lead.

The Northstars then took control in the top of the second. After loading the bases again, a walk drove in Tanner Delarosa for a run. Another walk then brought in Colter Solomon for another run.

Brody Nanini added onto the lead when he scored on a wild pitch. After loading the bases again, Ezra Pyle was hit by a pitch to bring in McKay for a run that pushed the lead to 5-0. The Spurs did get going in the bottom of the second as they scored a pair of runs to cut the deficit to 5-2.

But the Northstars got back on track in the top of the sixth. After getting on base earlier in the inning, McKay and Jevin Jenkins scored on the same error to give Havre a 7-2 lead. Vauxhall scored a run in the bottom of the seventh, but that was all the Northstars would allow as they secured the win to start the weekend.

At the plate, Nanini went 2-5 and scored a run while Pyle led the team with two RBIs. Kale Reno earned the win as he allowed six hits, one earned run and three walks in 6.2 innings pitched.

"Kale was great. It was good to see him on full rest and see what he can do," Wirtzberger said. "He can really go out there and give us a chance to win."

The Northstars continued to play well in their 7-2 victory over the Spurs later on Friday night. After slow starts for both teams, the Northstars took the lead in the top of the fourth when Jenkins scored on a sacrifice fly from Tyson Brandon. However, the Spurs responded in the bottom of the fourth to tie the game 1-1.

Havre responded in the top of the fifth to retake the lead. With the bases loaded, a walk brought in Solomon for a run and the lead. Logan Kinsella then scored on a groundout to add onto the lead. Pyle then drove in a run with a single to right to drive in a pair of runs for a 5-1 lead.

In the top of the sixth, the Northstars continued to add onto their lead. Solomon scored on an error and then McKay drove in a run with a single to left to make it a 7-1 game. The Spurs scored in the bottom of the sixth, but that was all they could muster as Havre went on to win.

McKay went 1-4 with two RBIs while Pyle went 1-1 with two RBIs for the Northstars. Terek Shipp pitched the entire game for the Northstars as he allowed eight hits, two earned runs, five walks and he recorded five strikeouts.

The Northstars continued their road trip with their 15-1 win over the Fort Macleod Royals on Saturday afternoon. It did not take long as the Northstars struck first in the top of the first with an RBI single from Drake Berreth. Then in the top of the second with the bases loaded, Nanini was hit by a pitch to bring in Delarosa for the run and a 2-0 lead.

In the top of the third, the Northstars got on a roll to take control. With two runners on, back-to-back errors allowed McKay and Berreth to score. Later in the inning, Brandon and Delarosa scored on a fielder's choice to give Havre a 6-0 lead. Kinsella then scored on a passed ball for the Northstars. After loading the bases, Berreth was hit by a pitch to bring in Nanini for a run to make it an 8-0 game.

In the top of the fourth, Solomon scored on a passed ball to push the lead to 9-0. In the bottom of the fourth, the Royals finally scored a run to cut the deficit to 9-1. But the Northstars got hot again in the top of the sixth to widen the gap. With the bases loaded, back-to-back errors allowed Brandon and Delarosa to score to make it an 11-1 game. A walk then brought in Solomon for a score.

After loading the bases again, back-to-back walks brought in Kinsella and Nanini for runs to push the lead to 14-1. Shipp then scored on a sacrifice fly from Brandon to make it a 15-1 game. The Northstars recorded three quick outs in the bottom of the sixth to end the game early by run rule.

At the plate, Berreth went 3-3 with three RBIs while Nanini, Brandon and Kinsella each recorded two RBIs in the contest. Jenkins pitched all six innings for Havre as he allowed four hits and one earned run, and he recorded seven strikeouts. Jenkins' performance was just another strong showing for Havre's pitching staff over the weekend.

"All of our starting pitchers in the four games over the weekend gave us really good starts and got deep in there so we didn't have to use much of the bullpen," Wirtzberger said.

The Northstars capped off their road trip with a 17-4 win over the Royals later on Saturday. After a scoreless first inning, the Northstars took control in the top of the second. With the bases loaded with two outs, Kinsella hit a single to center to drive in a pair of runs for a 2-0 lead.

Berreth followed that up with a triple to right to drive in another pair of runs for a 4-0 lead. Berreth then scored on a wild pitch to push Havre's lead to 5-0. The Royals scored a couple runs in the bottom of the third, but it was not enough to keep pace with the Northstars.

In the top of the fourth, back-to-back errors allowed Brandon, Chason Mader and Kinsella to score to push the lead to 8-2. In the top of the fifth with the bases loaded, an error allowed Delarosa to score. Kinsella then drove in a run with a single to center.

Through the rest of the inning, the Northstars' bats drove in the runs. Berreth hit a triple to right to clear the bases and push the lead to 13-2. Reno then drove in Berreth with a single to center. Reno then scored thanks to an RBI double from Jenkins.

Later in the inning, an error allowed Jenkins to score. Pyle then hit a triple to right to drive in another run to further push the lead to 17-2. Many Northstars had great games to end the weekend, including Berreth who went 2-4 with five RBIs and Kinsella who went 2-2 with three RBIs.

"Against Fort Macleod, we felt like the boys hit the ball a little bit better (than they did against Vauxhall)," Wirtzberger said. "We were just doing the right things, having good bats, getting runners on and getting hits when they got runners in scoring position."

The Royals scored a couple runs in the bottom of the fifth, but the Northstars eventually recorded three outs to win the game early by run rule. Lane Kinsella earned the win as he allowed three hits, two earned runs and four walks in 3.0 innings pitched.

With the successful weekend, the Northstars improved their record to 22-13-1 this season. After some ups and downs earlier in the season, the Northstars are in a rhythm with six straight wins.

"I feel like we're progressing in the right direction," Wirtzberger said about their recent play. "We need to continue to get a whole lot better but I think we're getting there."

The Northstars will be back in action with a trip to Conrad to face the Tri County Cardinals tonight. As the Northstars look to extend their winning streak, Wirtzberger believes they just need to stay on course.

"(We have to) just keep focusing on our process," Wirtzberger said. "If we do the little things correctly, the results usually take care of themselves. We just can't get too far ahead of ourselves and take it one game at a time."

The Havre Northstars will face the Tri County Cardinals in a doubleheader in Conrad starting at 5 p.m. tonight.

Havre 7, Vauxhall 3

HAV 1 4 0 0 0 2 0 - 7 4 2

VAU 0 2 0 0 0 0 1 - 3 6 2

WP - Kale Reno

LP - A. Vulcano

Havre Batting - Brody Nanini 2-5, Terek Shipp 0-3, Conner McKay 1-3, Jevin Jenkins 0-1, Drake Berreth 1-2, Ezra Pyle 0-3, Tanner Delarosa 0-3, Chason Mader 0-4, Colter Solomon 0-3.

Havre 7, Vauxhall 2

HAV 0 0 0 1 4 2 0 - 7 2 0

VAU 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 - 2 8 1

WP - Terek Shipp

LP - J. Pavka

Havre Batting - Brody Nanini 0-3, Drake Berreth 0-1, Conner McKay 1-4, Jevin Jenkins 0-3, Ezra Pyle 1-1, Tyson Brandon 0-2, Kale Reno 0-2, Colter Solomon 0-2, Logan Kinsella 0-2.

Havre 15, Fort Macleod 1

HAV 1 1 6 1 0 6 X - 15 7 1

FM 0 0 0 1 0 0 X - 1 4 6

WP - Jevin Jenkins

LP - C. Kambeitz

Havre Batting - Brody Nanini 0-3, Terek Shipp 0-2, Conner McKay 2-4, Drake Berreth 3-3, Kale Reno 0-4, Tyson Brandon 0-3, Tanner Delarosa 1-4, Colter Solomon 1-3, Logan Kinsella 0-2.

Havre 17, Fort Macleod 4

HAV 0 5 0 3 9 X X - 17 12 0

FM 0 0 2 0 2 X X - 4 6 6

WP - Lane Kinsella

LP - M. Blackmore

Havre Batting - Drake Berreth 2-4, Kale Reno 1-4, Jevin Jenkins 1-4, Terek Shipp 0-3, Tanner Delarosa 2-4, Tyson Brandon 0-3, Ezra Pyle 2-3, Chason Mader 2-4, Logan Kinsella 2-2.

 

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