The beat didn’t stop as the Okotoks Dawgs completed a three-game sweep over the Fort McMurray Giants with an 11-2 victory tonight at Seaman Stadium during Western Major Baseball League action.
Tonight’s victory marked the third time this series the Dawgs piled up 11 runs.
“The teams is starting to click. I think they were a little hesitant to start the season, but we are playing the game hard and playing aggressive finally,” said Dawgs Assistant Coach Andy Peterson.
After a one-out single by Ryan Humeniuk (Indian Hills Community College), Riley Baasch (Bellevue University) cranked his second home run of the season on the first offering he saw to put the Dawgs up 3-0. Baasch picked up his third RBI of the game when he ripped a ball at the third basemen B.J. Minarcin, who was playing in. The ball ricocheted off his mitt and into foul territory, which allowed Nate DeChaine (Morningside College) to trot home.
Tasked with the job of shutting the Giants down was Mason Swegarden (Mayville State University), who finally made his home debut in his fourth start of the season in front of 2,270 fans.
“Awesome to finally get it. Ive been watching guys pitch here last few weeks and it’s been fun. It was a lot of fun pitching in front of these fans. I can’t wait until my next start,” said Swegarden.
The righty cruised through the first six innings. After getting drilled in the right shin with a comebacker in the second, it appeared like the throbbing got to him by the seventh. The Giants got him for four hits and a pair of earned runs. He struck out three batters in the end and improved his record to 3-0.
Jesse Coleman (Weber International University) and Craig Smith (Columbia College) teamed up to pitch two scoreless innings for the Dawgs (13-5).
Dawgs Academy product Nick Cardinal started on the bump for the Giants. Cardinal entered tonight’s action with a 1-0 record and 0.66 ERA in 21 innings, but gave up six earned runs on eight hits in five innings for his first loss on the season. The Giants (5-15) have now lost nine in a row.
The combination of Collin Ridout (Tennessee Wesleyan University) and DeChaine feasted on the Giants this series. They struck again when Ridout leadoff the fifth with a double. Seven pitches later, DeChaine drove him in with a single to right field.
“They’re locked in right now. Guys are getting on base in front of them, which makes their job easier. Now, they’re just digging in and having fun,” said Peterson.
Ridout and DeChaine clicked again in the eighth when Ridout belted his third double of the season to plate Brandon Sparks (Bellevue University). Two pitches later, DeChaine scored Ridout on another single to right.
This series, Ridout and DeChaine have combined for 10 hits, eight RBIs and nine runs scored.
Pilling on runs in the ninth with RBI hits were Marcus Skundrich (Mesa Community College), Will Hollis (Cisco Community College) and Humeniuk.
For the second time this series, the Dawgs stole a run. This time is was Baasch who swiped second base, which allowed Hollis to run home in the fifth.
In the second, the Dawgs loaded the bases when Baasch was drilled with a pitch to go with a pair of two-out walks. Richard Mascarenas (Linn-Benton Community College) ripped an RBI double down the left field line.
Mascarenas also led the eighth off with an infield single, tied the team lead with his fifth stolen base and eventually scored on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Eddie Sanchez (Central Arkansas University).
The Dawgs final home game of this five-game set goes tomorrow night (7:05 p.m.) at Seaman Stadium when the Lethbridge Bulls (7-12) roll into town.