Gunnar Gunderson delivered a two-RBI hit in the sixth inning to help Crookston beat BGMR 5-3.

    The Pirates had to play hang-on in the final innings, but an early lead and a late, clutch hit mixed with timely pitching proved to be enough to drown the Badger-Greenbush-Middle River Gators 5-3.

    Crookston (3-6, 1-4 Section 8AA) took advantage of an error and struck first in the opening frame. Brady Butt (Jr. RHP), who started on the mound, scored the game's first run coming home on a wild pitch, and Jade Selzler (Sr. C) brought home Leyton Salentine (Jr. SS) with a sacrifice fly.

    Butt kept the Gators' bats in check with 5.2 innings of work and three runs. The junior blanked BGMR (9-8, 9-3 Section 8A) for the first three innings and only ran into serious trouble in the bottom of the sixth. Salentine relieved the righty after two crossed the plate with two outs and struck out a pair en route to a four-out save, and the Pirates' third win of the season.

    “Brady was throwing strikes and hitting the zone,” Pirates Head Coach Mitch Bakken said. “The ump had a low zone, and he kept hitting it. They had bases loaded twice, and we gave up one in one inning and none the other. Our defense played much better today, and Leyton came in and threw really well."

    The Gators threatened in the fourth loading the bases with two outs, and Adam Benke (So. DH) knocked in one on an RBI single to cut the deficit in half at 2-1, but Butt got a flyout to end the threat.

    With the Pirates ahead 5-1, BGMR tallied their second and third two-out runs of the game when Garrett Undeberg (So. C) slapped a double to left center in the sixth. Undeberg eventually came around to score on a wild pitch to make it a 5-3 ballgame. Salentine hit a batter to load the bases and escaped further trouble getting a ground ball to short.

    The only reason the Pirates still had a lead to preserve after BGMR's two runs came in the form of a clutch hit by Gunner Gunderson (Fr. CF) in the top half of the inning. The nine hitter stepped up to the plate with the bags juiced and smacked a single to right center to plate Brooks Butt (Fr. 3B) and Walker Winjum (Jr. 2B), and Crookston extended their lead to 5-1.

    “[Gunnar’s] been having good at-bats,” Bakken said. “He was getting DH-ed for a couple games, and I don’t know if that got him rethinking and readjusting, but he’s been hitting really well in the last three games. He’s staying back on the ball and driving it to right center and not trying to do too much.”

    Salentine worked a one-two-three seventh inning with two punchouts to seal the win.

    The Pirates will return to the field on Friday, May 17 for a game in Fergus Falls at 5 p.m.

Crookston 2 0 0 0 1 2 0 5 9 2 BGMR 0 0 0 1 0 2 0 3 8 3 Crookston AB R H RBI Joe Doda (DH/SS) 3 1 0 0 Brady Butt (P/1B) 4 0 2 0 Leyton Salentine (SS/P) 3 1 1 0

Gavin Salem (1B)

-Cade DeLeon (RF)









-Carter Bruggeman (PH/RF) 1 0 0 0 Jade Selzler (C) 2 0 0 1 Brooks Butt (3B) 3 1 2 0 Walker Winjum (2B) 3 1 2 0 Ashton Larson (LF) 2 0 0 0 Gunner Gunderson (CF) 3 0 1 2 -Kaleb Thingelstad (PR) 0 1 0 0 Pitchers IP H R ER BB K Brady Butt (W) 5.2 8 3 3 1 4 Leyton Salentine (S) 1.1 0 0 0 0 2 BGMR AB R H RBI Andy Dostal (2B) 4 0 1 0 Keegan Rustad (LF) 1 0 0 0 Kamrin Weets (SS) 4 1 2 0 Dylan Heggedal (CF) 4 0 1 0 Kobey Dallager (3B) 4 0 0 0 Aven Augustson (RF) 3 1 1 0 Adam Benke (DH) 3 0 1 1 Kasen Swenson (1B/P) 3 0 0 0 Garrett Undeberg (C) 3 1 2 1 Pitchers IP H R ER BB K Dominik Vacura (L) 6.2 9 5 4 3 0 Kasen Swenson 0.1 0 0 0 0 0

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