Tanager baseball improves record to 3-1

Tanager baseball improves record to 3-1 By Parker Knox Sportswriter Vermillion's baseball Tanagers scored 33 runs in three games last week, winning two of them and improving their record for the still-young season to 3-1. Coach Jason Gault's ballclub will have three home games at Prentis Park in the next week before embarking on six straight road contests.  Vermillion hosts Parkston at noon Saturday, Bon Homme at 4 p.m. Monday and Beresford at 5 p.m. Wednesday. In each case a JV game will follow the varsity encounter. VHS 14, Dakota Valley 8 It took a six-run final inning to put away the Panthers in North Sioux City Friday night.  A bases-loaded walk started the Tanagers toward clinching the game, followed by a two-run single by Jason Rasmussen, a two-run hit by Andrew Eidem and a run-scoring single by Kyle Nemec. Nemec's hit climaxed a big night for the big guy.  He had three hits, scored three times and drove in four runs. Two Dakota Valley errors, a walk and Cory Taggart's run-scoring double gave VHS a 2-0 first-inning lead, but the Panthers put together three singles to tie the game moments later. The Tanagers took advantage of three walks to start their fourth inning. Nemec followed with a two-run single.  An infield error let in another run, and J.R. Moore's sacrifice fly made it a 6-2 lead. Zach Meyer's solo home run for the Panthers narrowed the lead to 6-3. Tyler Johnson showed flashes of last season's brilliance in throwing the first four innings for VHS. After DV scored twice in the first, Johnson struck out the side in the second and, in fact, retired 12 of the remaining 14 batters he faced. VHS went up by 8-3 in the fifth when Nemec doubled home one tally and Johnson singled in another. Moore came in in relief in the fifth but struggled, giving up four straight walks and a bases-clearing triple by Brock DeVries as the Panthers tied the game at 8-8. Grant Lueders relieved Moore and retired the first seven men he faced. In the seventh with a 14-8 lead with which to work, he retired the Panthers on three infield balls with only an infield error and a walk interspersed among them. Besides Nemec's three hits, Rasmussen had two of the Tanagers' other six base knocks.  He and Eidem each had two RBIs with McBride, Taggart, Johnson and Moore plating the others. Dakota Valley used five pitchers with the fourth, Shawn Hoffman, getting into the seventh-inning mess and absorbing the loss. The Dakota Valley JVs defeated Vermillion, 13-3. Yankton 8, VHS 7 Coach Gault used 18 players in a narrow loss to Yankton at Prentis Park Thursday night.  The Tanagers, with eight of their starters playing only four innings, pounded out 12 hits and finally went down with the tying run at second base in the bottom of the seventh. Vermillion got on the board initially when leadoff man Sam McBride singled in the first and scored on Kyle Nemec's single.  In the second the lead grew to 3-0 when Grant Lueders doubled home the singling J.R. Moore, and Lueders followed him across the plate because of Jason Rasmussen's hit. The Bucks got two runs back off starter Nemec in the fourth.  A sparkling catch at shortstop by Rasmussen prevented a bigger inning, and the stanza ended when catcher Andrew Eidem easily nailed a would-be basestealer with a peg to McBride, the second baseman. Back in the top of the first, Nemec's fielding play prevented Yankton's taking an early lead.  Two hits with a walk between them had loaded the bases with one out, but a sharp come-backer to Nemec was turned into a pitcher-to-home-to-first double play to get the Tanagers out of hot water. To give as many reserves and JV players as possible some varsity game time, Gault substituted for eight of his nine starters — all but first-baseman Lueders — in the fifth inning. In their first at-bat, the VHS newcomers accounted for a run. Ryun Fischbach reached on an error, advanced on a hit by Nick Anglin and a walk to Earl Kiertzner, then scored on Mike Oberle's infield hit. The ball off Oberle's bat ended up no more than six feet in front of home plate, but neither the Yankton pitcher nor catcher could field it in time to beat the oncoming Fischbach from third. Reliever Anglin ran into grief in the sixth when Yankton combined four singles, a hit batter and a walk to take a 6-4 lead.  The Bucks made it 8-4 in the seventh on a two-run inside-the-park homer off the second VHS reliever, Brian Hansen. Given life by a pair of Buck errors to start their final at-bat, the Tanagers got to within a single run on a run-scoring single by Kiertzner and a two-run double over the centerfielder's head by Hansen.  He stood at second with the tying run with only one out, but Yankton was able to retire the next two VHS batters on a pop-up to the catcher and a fly to left. Of Vermillion's 12 hits, Lueders and Moore had two apiece. VHS 12, Beresford 2 A three-run first inning propelled Vermillion to a five-inning win shortened due to the 10-run rule. Starting pitcher J.R. Moore picked up the win with a four-inning mound stint during which he allowed only one unearned run while fanning three, walking only one and allowing six hits. Grant Lueders threw the fifth inning, permitting one earned run and three hits while striking out two. A two-run triple off Cory Taggart's bat in the first gave VHS an early lead. Kyle Nemec plated another tally for a 3-0 advantage. Andrew Eidem poked a two-run single in the second. VHS took advantage of five walks in the third by Beresford's Eric Dokken. By the time the inning ended Vermillion had added four runs with Tyler Johnson contributing a single and Brian Hansen a two-run single. VHS added three more runs in the fifth, the last three crossing the plate on walks. Nemec finished the day going 1-for-1 with two RBIs. Taggart was 1-for-2 with his two-run triple, Moore had a double going 1-for-2 and Eidem was also 1-for-2 with two RBIs. Vermillion's JVs won 2-1 over Beresford.

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