Libby hosts second win at home vs Twins

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Tripp Zhang smacks a stand-up double on the 3-2 pitch with one out bottom of the fifth inning vs. Glacier Twins B. Loggers over Twins 6-2 Wednesday evening. (Paul Sievers/The Western News)

The Libby Loggers had their second win of the season Wednesday, beating the Glacier Twins B team 6-2 in nine innings.

“I thought we played a really solid ballgame,” said Libby Head Coach Kelly Morford.

Morford said that the Loggers did well with strikes, as well as with fielding ground balls in the infield.

“When you don’t give away extra outs on those ground balls, it really helps your pitchers, and just helps overall,” he said.

Morford said he would still like to see more hits for Libby, but noted that they had the runs they needed for the win.

In the top of the first, shortstop Quade Anderson brought the Loggers to bat with a double play off a line drive, closing the half inning after snapping the ball to Donovan Fornall at first for the final out.

The Loggers followed up in the bottom of the inning with the first run of the game. Anderson made a steal to second, and an error during an attempt to tag him out gave Jeff Offenbecher an opening to make it home.

Glacier responded in the top of the second with a run off a sacrifice grounder to Offenbecher, who was pitching, and held the score tied 1-1 through the bottom of the inning, sending Libby back to the dugout with no hits.

But the Loggers held the Twins off in the top of the third. Anderson pitched two strikeouts, and third baseman Moxley Roesler-Begalke fielded a grounder to Fornall at first for the final out.

In the bottom of the third, Tripp Zhang got Libby moving again with a homerun, sending the ball over the center-right fence and bringing in Offenbecher ahead of him to give the Loggers a 3-1 lead.

Morford said that the Loggers are lucky to have Zhang, who recently moved to the area.

“He had a great game tonight — had a homerun and a double — and he’s got a really nice swing on him,” he said. “It’s fun to have him in the lineup.”

Libby kept their offensive momentum in the fourth inning. Roesler-Begalke took the mound, and a ground out to Anderson at third was followed with a walk after Glacier’s Jace Crabb was hit by a pitch.

Roesler-Begalke didn’t leave Crabb on base, though, picking him off for the second out, and ending the inning with a groundout he fielded to Fornall at first.

The Loggers had 2 hits in the bottom of the fourth, but no runs, leaving two runners on base.

Still, Libby kept on top of the Twins in the top of the fifth. Roesler-Begalke pitched a strikeout on the first batter, and the second groundout to Offenbecher at shortstop.

Roesler-Begalke allowed a single walk, but a pop out to Fornall at first left Glacier’s Chance Butzlaff stranded as the Loggers came back to bat.

Zhang started off the bottom of the inning with a double, and was followed onto base by Anderson, who reached first on an error. Caden Williams had the next hit with a hard ground ball to center field, reaching first and sending Zhang and Anderson home, to make the score 5-1, Libby.

The sixth inning saw no hits for either team. Caden Williams pitched a strikeout in the top of the inning, followed by a groundout to second baseman Alex Svendsbye, and another to Fornall at first.

In the top of the seventh, the Twins scored their final run on an error, and held the Loggers to a single base taken on an error off a ground ball hit by Tucker Masters.

Glacier kept battling in the eighth, with their only hit a hard ground ball to left field by Myles Hartley. But Caden Williams pitched a strikeout followed by a groundout to Offenbecher at shortstop to leave Hartley at first when the half inning ended.

The Loggers had their final run in the bottom of the inning, when — with 2 outs on the board — Caden Williams scored on a passed ball.

Though the Loggers weren’t free of errors, they also didn’t seem to let one play negatively affect the next.

Morford said that the coaching staff has talked about helping the boys to stay relaxed.

“You can be a better baseball player when you’re relaxed, and that’s something we need to work on,” Morford said. “And I think we did a good job of that tonight — just staying calm and staying solid in some of those tight situations.

The Loggers play at home again Wednesday, when they face the Clark Fork Cougs during Community Appreciation Night.

Admission is free Wednesday, though the Loggers are fundraising for the Lauer family. The team will be taking donations at the gate and hold a 50/50 drawing to support Tracy Lauer and her family.

There will be a special hamburger, chips and drink meal deal available with 100 percent of the proceeds going to the Lauers. Tracy’s daughter Laurynn will sing the national anthem and her son Erik will throw out the first pitch.

Wednesday, May 29

Libby 6, Glacier 2

G 010 000 100 - R:2 H:4 E:4

L 102 020 01X - R:6 H:8 E:2

G: Mason Doran 1-0, 1BB, 1K; Titus Hartley 2-0, 1K; Myles Hartley 4-1; Corbin Hurst 4-0, 1K; Jace Crabb 3-1, 1R; Preston Trenery 4-1, 1R, 1K; Gavin Schroeder 3-1, 1BB, 2K; Jed King 4-0, 1RBI; Chance Butzlaff 1-0, 2BB, 1K; Will King 3-0, 1K.

L: Jeff Offenbecher 4-1, 2R, 1K; Tripp Zhang 3-2, 2R, 2RBI; Tucker Masters 1-0; Quade Anderson 3-1, 1R; Donovan Fornall 4-0, 3K; Caden Williams 4-2, 1R, 2RBI, 2K; Trey Thompson 4-2, 1K; Moxley Roesler-Begalke 2-0; Aydan Williamson 1-0; Ethan Borden 2-0, 1K; Cole Murphy 2-0; Alex Svendsbye 4-0, 1K.

Batting: 2B - Anderson, Zhang; HR - Zhang; TB - Hartley, Crabb, Trenery, Schroeder; C. Williams 2, Offenbecher, Anderson 2, Thompson 2, Zhang 6; ROE - Offenbecher, Anderson, Masters; SB - Crabb; Williams, Offenbecher, Anderson 2.

Pitching: W - Offenbecher 2, 22 P, .636 S%, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 SO, 1 BB; Anderson 1, 10 P, .800 S%, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 SO, 0 BB; Roesler-Begalke 1.2, 26 P, .462 S%, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 SO, 1 BB; C. Williams 4.1, 49 P, .653 S%, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 4 SO, 2 BB; L - Hurst 4.1, 86 P, .651 S%, 6 H, 5 R, 2 ER, 7 SO, 0 BB, 1 HR; Schroeder 3.2, 40 P, .625 S%, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 2 SO, 0 BB.

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