The Crookston Pirate Baseball team traveled to Greenbush on Thursday afternoon to battle the Badger/Greenbush-Middle River (BGMR) Gators. The Pirates were also supposed to play in Roseau earlier in the day against the Rams, but that game was canceled due to rain. It was questionable if the field in Greenbush would be ready in time, but the sunshine came out and after plenty of work on the mound and at the home plate circle, the two teams were able to get the game in. The offense traveled with the Pirates, and Crookston scored 25 runs including 10 in the fourth inning for a 25-2 win over the Gators. 

Crookston got on the board in the top of the first after Alex Longoria drew a one-out walk, stole second base, advanced to third on a wild pitch, and came home after the Gators catcher threw the ball into left field trying to pick him off. That gave Crookston a 1-0 lead, but BGMR would quickly tie the game in the bottom of the frame. The leadoff hitter would hit a triple on the first pitch delivered by Brooks Butt, and the next hitter would hit a groundball out bringing the runner home to tie the game at 1-1. Butt would get the next two hitters out leaving the game tied at 1-1 entering the top of the second inning.

Crookston would erupt in the top of the second, hitting around their lineup and scoring five runs. It started with an Austin Trinkle leadoff single, and after an infield single from Spencer Ness, Ashton Larson would rope a double over the center fielders head scoring Trinkle and giving the Pirates the lead back at 2-1. “We decided to play Ashton after he got the okay to play from his physical therapist and he hit the ball hard,” said Pirate Coach Scott Butt. “It was nice to have him back in the line up.” After a flyout, the Gators would then make back-to-back errors allowing two more runs to come around and score and giving Crookston a 4-1 lead. Brooks Butt would then smack a double off the center field fence to score Longoria, and after Cade DeLeon hit a sacrifice fly to score Ethan Boll, it was 6-1 Pirates by the time the inning was over. “That was a fun inning,” said Coach Butt. “We were making contact and that forced some errors, and we also had some nice hits.”

BGMR would again answer back for one run in the bottom of the second inning. This time the Gators would get a 1-out walk and a single to right field putting runners on the corners. Again, BGMR would hit a groundball, this time to shortstop Alex Longoria who would come up firing for the out at first base. The out would bring a run across the plate, but no more damage would be done, and Crookston would take a 6-2 lead into the third inning.

For the third straight inning, the Pirates offense would produce at least one run. Ashton Larson would one-up his previous at-bat and this time and hit a 1-out triple to the right-center field gap. George Widman would then do his job by hitting a sacrifice fly to bring Larson home and give the Pirates a 7-2 advantage heading to the bottom of the third inning. “Ashton really came out and hit the ball hard today,” said Coach Butt.  “It was great to see after missing a few games because of injury.”

In the bottom of the third inning, the Gators leadoff hitter would reach via a Pirates error, but Jackson Demarais would catch him on the next pitch trying to steal second base for the first out of the inning. BGMR would get a runner in scoring position with a double, but Butt would induce two groundballs to get the Pirates back in the dugout still in front 7-2. “Jackson had a great throw,” said Coach Butt. “He has played great behind the plate for us since Ashton went down and it is great to see.”

The Pirates would attack again in the top of the fourth inning, and for the second time in the game, hit all the way around their lineup. It was the best offensive inning of the season for the Pirates. Ethan Boll would start the inning with a leadoff triple. Brooks Butt would then reach on a Gators error by the shortstop, and Boll would come around to score on the play. That made it 8-2 Pirates, and after Jackson Demarais hit his second single of the game, there were runners on first and third with nobody out. Cade DeLeon would go to right field for a single making it 9-2 Crookston and after a wild pitch, Crookston had Blake Melsa on third base courtesy running for Demarais, and DeLeon on second base with nobody out. Austin Trinkle would keep the train moving along with a walk to load the bases, and after another BGMR error on the next play, Melsa would come across to score giving Crookston a 10-2 lead, and leaving the bases loaded with nobody out. A wild pitch would bring DeLeon in to score, and Trinkle would try to come all the way around to score from second base on the play but be tagged out at the plate for the first out of the inning. Ashton Larson would then rope a shot that the shortstop couldn’t handle, scoring another run, but he would be thrown out at second base on the play for the second out of the inning. George Widman would then hit a 2-out single, and after a Longoria walk, the Pirates again had a runner in scoring position. Ethan Boll who led off the inning with a triple would then single through the right-side scoring Widman and giving Crookston a 13-2 lead forcing a Gators pitching change. Brooks Butt kept the fun going with a rbi double down the left-field line scoring Longoria and moving Boll up to third base. After a wild pitch scored another run, three straight walks would score another run and the scoreboard read 16-2 in favor of Crookston. Ness would tack on another with a rbi single to right-field, but BGMR would finally get the last out of the inning after that. Crookston added ten more runs in the inning on six hits and take a 17-2 lead heading into the bottom of the fourth.  “Everybody that dressed today, all 18 players, had a part in this win and that was great to see,” said Coach Butt. 

BGMR would be held scoreless in the bottom of the fourth inning, and the Pirates would knock a few bloop singles, draw a few walks, and add eight more runs for a 25-2 lead. The inning was highlighted by a base clearing double from Parker Kelly scoring three runs. During the inning, Crookston was able to get every single player who had yet to play into the game. BGMR would’ve needed 14 runs in the bottom of the fifth to keep the game going, and they failed to score any, giving Crookston a 25-2 win in 5 innings due to the run rule. “It was a good game for us,” said Coach Butt. “Like I said before, everybody that dressed helped us win the game.  Brooks pitched well and the defense was great behind him.  All-in-all, it was a pretty good game.  Hopefully we get to play Friday and it carries over into those games.”

Crookston improves to 2-4 on the season and will now play two games tomorrow at Jim Karn Field. The first will be against Kittson County Central at 4:00 p.m. and the second against Ada-Borup/West at roughly 6:00 p.m. BGMR falls to 1-8 on the season.

1 2 3 4 5 R H E
Crookston 1 5 1 10 8 25 18 2
BGMR 1 1 0 0 0 2 3 8


Pitching IP H R ER BB K
Brooks Butt – Crox 5.0 3 2 2 2 2
Gabe Warne – BGMR 3.2 9 15 8 5 1
Vincent Stenberg – BGMR 0.1 2 2 2 1 0
Elliot Isane – BGMR 1.0 7 8 6 2 1


For Crookston –
Jackson Demarais – 3 for 3, 3 runs, 2 walks,
Brooks Butt – 3 for 4, 4 rbi, 3 runs, 2 doubles
Ashton Larson – 2 for 4, triple, double, 2 runs, rbi

Caleb Vacura – 1 for 2, run, walk, triple
Taylor Davy – 1 for 2
Gabe Warne – 1 for 3, rbi