A tripleheader of high school baseball awaits local fans Sunday as Vermillion High School opens its home season at Prentis Park.
The Tanagers will play a varsity doubleheader starting at 2 p.m. against the cooperative team representing Mount Vernon, Hanson, Ethan and Woonsocket with a junior varsity game to follow at 6 p.m.
VHS will be right back to business the next night for home games against Dakota Valley. The one varsity game starts at 5, followed by the JV contest at 7.
The Tanagers have rebounded from their opening-day 14-4 loss at Yankton on March 28 by winning their next two games, both against opponents from within their region. That means Vermillion has a 2-0 record so far in the standings that will determine seedings for the Region 1B Eastern Division tournament in May.
Beresford also stands at 2-0 among teams in the Eastern Division of Region 1B while Dakota Valley and Bon Homme are 1-1.
The MVHEW team that comes to Prentis Park on Sunday has a 3-1 overall record so far and is 2-0 in the Western Division of Region 1B because of a 9-7 win over Parkston and a 5-0 shutout over Corsica/Stickney/ Armour.
Monday's opponent, Dakota Valley, so far has a 10-3 win over Corsica/Stickney/Armour as well as the 13-2 loss to the Tanagers.
Vermillion broke open a tight game with a big inning late in last Thursday's game at Dakota Valley, eventually taking out the Panthers by a 14-3 count. On Monday at Parkston the Tanagers were 9-3 winners.
Tyler Husby, who had been roughed up in one inning in the opener at Yankton, was back in form at Dakota Valley. He threw four solid innings for VHS, allowing only two earned runs. "It was a much different Tyler Husby than we saw at Yankton," said Coach Jason Gault.
Brian Hansen pitched the last three innings, holding the Panthers in check. He also contributed on offense with two hits and three runs batted in.
Jason Rasmussen stroked three basehits for Vermillion and drove home a pair of runs.
At Parkston Nick Anglin celebrated his 18th birthday by securing a pitching victory, allowing only three runs. He was backed up by solid defense and timely hitting.
The senior duo of Rasmussen and Hansen again led the offense. In the first inning they got the Tanagers off on the right foot with back-to-back doubles off the outfield wall, Rasmussen's going to right field and Hansen's to left.
Sam Ekstrom and Husby contributed with key two-run singles. Freshman Chayse Meierkort posted his first varsity hit and RBI.
Hansen again came through in the role of closer, hurling the final three innings in relief.