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Legion Baseball: Buzz fall on hard times

Shawn Stafki hits a solo homer in Perham's doubleheader with Fergus Falls last week. The Buzz had a 3-0 lead in the second game, but lost 7-3 as Fergus Falls completed the sweep.

By Jim Carrington,

Bemidji Pioneer

The Bemidji American Legion continued its late season improvement Monday, sweeping Perham 6-2 and 9-2 at the BSU diamond.

It lifted Bemidji to 10-12 on the year, going 8-2 in its last 10 games. Perham drops to 9-8, having lost five of their last six games.

Bemidji received two fine mound efforts from Josh Kane and Chad Head Monday and took full advantage of loose Perham defense that gave the Legion three unearned runs in the opener and seven in the nightcap.

Kane gave up hits to the first three batters he faced to trail 1-0 at the start.

But Perham managed only five more the rest of the game, scoring an unearned run in the sixth on a two out error.

Bemidji wrapped up the game early, scoring five times in the second. Two errors around a walk filled the bases with no outs. A double and a single brought home three runs and a fourth crossed as a bunt went for a hit when no one covered first. The fifth run crossed on a sacrifice fly.

Shane Miller then shut down Bemidji through the next three frames none hit. But Bemidji added a final run in the sixth.

Miller, Gavin Biegler and Anthony Ruther all had two hits for Perham.

Game two followed a similar pattern with Bemidji snapping a 2-2 tie with four unearned runs in the third and adding three more before the game ended.

Bemidji opened with two in the first on a walk and a pair of two-out hits.

But Perham converted a single, triple and single into two quick runs in the second to tie the score. After that, the Buzz managed only three more base runners, two hits and a walk, all in separate innings.

Bemidji went ahead to stay with their four unearned runs in the third inning.

Andrew Muer, who worked the first three frames, got the loss for Post 61.

FF takes 3-of-4

After splitting a pair of games on June 29 in Fergus Falls (L, 7-6; W, 10-6), the Buzz returned home on July 2 to face the Otters again. This time, Fergus Falls swept Post 61, 12-0 (5 inn.) and 7-3.

The Buzz managed just two hits in the game one loss, one from Gavin Biegler, the other from Tyler Lynne. Shawn Stafki was the hard-luck loser on the mound for Perham. He allowed 10 runs in his 3 2/3 innings of work, but just three of them were earned, as his defense made five errors behind him.

A two-run homer by Biegler and a solo shot by Stafki helped Perham to a 3-0 lead in game two against Fergus Falls. But the visitor's scored six times in the third and went on to the 7-3 win for the sweep.

Taylor Doll took the loss on the mound, pitching 6 innings, giving up seven runs, five earned. Recently injured Brad Ellingson pitched the seventh in his return to the mound, striking out one.

Buzz split with FF

The Buzz split their doubleheader with Fergus Falls in a makeup game on Monday, June 29.

The first game was won by Fergus Falls in the bottom of the seventh. Buzz starter Trace Miller was hit early, and Perham went down 4-0 in the first. They battled back to take a 6-5 lead going into the bottom of the seventh. Then, Fergus Falls stringed together a couple of hits and scored two runs to win the game, 7-6.

Reliever Muer took the loss for the Buzz.

Post 61 came back with a 10-6 win in game two for the split.

The Buzz got the scoring started with a seven-run third inning. They added one in the fourth and two in the seventh for the win.

Ruther went 5 2/3 innings on the mound for Perham before leaving the game with a back problem. He gave way to Miller who finished out the game.

Biegler and Jake Kalina each drove in two runs. Miller and Lynne were both 2-for-4 with a double.

Road Warriors

Post 61's doubleheader at Krueger Field on July 2 was their final appearance at home. They began their road trek to finish the season at Grand Rapids on Tuesday.

The Buzz will play in the Marshall Tournament July 11-12, then return to the Lakes Area for a game at Pelican Rapids on July 13 at 6:30 p.m.

The final doubleheader of the regular season will be in Moorhead on July 16. The District 9 Tournament will be in Thief River Falls July 22-26.

(Jim Carrington of the Bemidji Pioneer contributed to this story. The Bemidji Pioneer and EOT Illustrated are both owned by Forum Communications.)