Pine River baseball team sweeps Manton

LEROY — Pine River’s baseball team earned its second-straight sweep Wednesday night (May 14) with 7-2 and 5-1 victories over Manton.

“I was trying to save some pitching for Friday, Saturday and Monday,” Pine River coach Shawn Ruppert said. “I thought Manton played good defense. We didn’t hit the ball like we normally do. We were a little laxed (Wednesday), I thought. I’m not taking anything from Manton.”

In the first game against Manton, the Bucks built a 6-0 lead and added a run in the bottom of the fifth on Mason Powell’s RBI double.

Starting pitcher Greg Park and reliever Grant Ruppert combined for six shutout innings. Lucas Harris came in the seventh and allowed two unearned runs. Park was the winning pitcher with four strikeouts. Powell, McDonald and Skyler Nelson both had RBI hits. Brady Long had two doubles and an RBI.

“I struggled keeping the ball down, but as I went on, I improved and didn’t allow any runs,” Grant Ruppert, who went three innings, said.  “So I’m content.”

In the second game, the Bucks raced out to a 2-0 lead before an RBI single from Brandon Hoaglund in the top of the fifth pushed the score to 3-1. In the sixth, Park had an RBI single and another run scored on a passed ball.

McDonald went the first six innings, striking out one and allowing three hits and three walks. Tony Moore went the final inning. Hoaglund had two hits and two RBIs while Ruppert tallied a hit.

“Both Greg and Mitch kept us in the game and did a good job,” Shawn Ruppert said. “We had different pitchers that threw (Wednesday). Those are guys that haven’t been able to pitch hardly any games at all. It’s good for them. We’re going to need them the next few days.”

Hoaglund is now 32-of-32 in steal attempts this season.