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Junior Agate Mike Nordean looks to get Mariner junior Zach Duresky out during Monday's match at Two Harbors. TH won 5-4. (Jill Innis)

Local teams finally hit the fields

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Mariner softball

The Mariner softball team went 3-3 in their last six games. They lost 7-1 at home to South Ridge and won two games against Cromwell with identical scores of 12-2. They split a doubleheader, defeating Barnum 8-4 then losing 9-0 to Esko. On Monday, they lost 6-2 at Two Harbors. They are now 4-5 overall, 3-4 in the Polar League and 1-2 versus Section 7A opponents.

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Phoenix Lillis picked up the win in game one versus Cromwell. Lillis, Rebecca Dilley, Kaelyn Lenski and Allison Morris each scored twice and Morris and Erika Ernest each had two RBIs in the six-inning game. Game two saw Emma Bemlott coming away with the victory in five innings. Lillis, Dilley and Ashley Peterson each scored twice and Everly Bauck went 2-for-2 and scored three times. Dilley had a home run and a triple and drove in five runs. Lillis added three RBIs.

Bemlott picked up the win versus Barnum, giving up four runs on seven hits. Lenski, Morris and Bemlott each scored twice. Lenski and Bemlott each had two hits and each added two RBIs. The Mariners were helped along by a five-run first inning.

The Mariners couldn't get an offense going against Esko Eskomo's pitcher Abbey Saralampi and failed to advance a runner past second base. The Mariners had three hits and six base runners in the game. The Eskomos were led offensively by Elle Emanuel and Saralampi who each had two hits along with Ashley Bergerson, Dani Johnson and Emanuel who each scored twice. Lillis took the loss giving up nine runs on eight hits.

Two Harbors baseball

After starting the season with a disheartening loss, the Agates baseball team is now 3-4 after a win over the Mariners Monday and splitting a pair of games over the weekend.

On Saturday, they played a double header at Barnum, defeating Floodwood 3-1 and Barnum 6-4.

Juniors Mark Pearson and Kyle Omtvedt have been holding down the pitching mound most of the season. Head Coach Rick Coughlin said the team has had very little practice outside--since the weather improved, they've been playing games almost every day.

"Today will be our second practice outside all year," Coughlin said on Tuesday. "We haven't had much time to do much practicing but it's the same for everybody."

Because of that--and the fact that seven of their 20 games were cancelled completely--he was hard-pressed to make predictions for the season.

"It's hard to say," he said when asked about prospects in playoffs, which are now just a week and a half away. He said Hermantown, Proctor and Cloquet have come out strong in the short season.

The boys play Proctor Wednesday, Carlton Friday and return home for a game against South Ridge on Monday at 4:30 p.m.

Mariner baseball

The baseball team went 2-3 in the last week and are now 3-5 overall, 3-4 in the conference and 3-2 versus section opponents. They lost 14-4 to Duluth Marshall, defeated Wrenshall 11-3, topped Barnum 5-0, lost 7-2 to Esko and 5-4 to Two Harbors.

Duluth Marshall used the stolen base, errors, wild pitches and passed balls to put away the Mariners 14-4 in six innings. The Hilltoppers had two earned runs in the game. Jake Fugere was the winning pitcher for Marshall and Chad Smuk took the loss for the Mariners. Luke Small and Brock LeBlanc each had doubles for the Mariners. Against Wrenshall, the Mariners used a seven-run fourth inning to overcome a 3-2 deficit. Jonah Koehler, Luke Small, Smuk and LeBlanc each scored twice. LeBlanc had three hits to go with two each from Small and Zach Duresky. Koehler, Smuk and LeBlanc each had 2 RBIs. Small picked up the win in relief of Koehler. They combined for a one hitter.

Esko scored seven times in the second inning on their way to the 7-2 victory.

Agates softball

In just over one week, the Agates have played nine games, leaving them with a record of 5-4.

The girls played a double-header on Tuesday, travelling first to Eveleth-Gilbert and then to Hibbing. They lost to E-G 5-2 and went on to defeat the Bluejackets 13-9.

Head coach Chris Lemke said the team has been busy since finally starting their games, but said a core group of girls have emerged with strong play. Ninth-grader Sara Fjeran is batting .464 with 23 stolen bases so far. Eighth-grader Ayla Lemke is batting .379 and leading the team with 16 RBIs, two doubles, two triples and one home run. Senior Savannah Juenemann is batting .300 and has had a strong pitching game with 4.75 era and 39 strike outs. Sophomore Jasmine Huikka, who was injured for the beginning of the season, just returned to the field Saturday. She is hitting .375 and has stolen 10 bases. Junior Lindsay Anderson is batting .269 and has been consistent in the field and at the plate, while senior Jenny Grignon has stepped into the catching role and been strong at bat, knocking in 11 runs to date.

The girls play Cook County at home on Friday at 2 p.m. and Mesabi East at 6 p.m.

Two Harbors defeats Silver Bay in baseball, softball

The Two Harbors baseball team scored twice in the bottom of the seventh inning to overcome a 4-3 deficit and come away with a 5-4 victory at home on Monday. The game proved to be a near carbon copy of last year's contest.

Steve Frikken doubled with one out and an infield single by Trygve Lodin put runners at first and second. A bloop single off the bat of Kyle Omtvedt loaded the bases, still with only one out. After a force out at second scored Frikken with the tying run, a catchable fly ball to short center field by Lucas Kempffer dropped in between three fielders and scored Lodin with the winning run.

Omtvedt went the distance to pick up the win for the Agates. He gave up four runs, none of them earned, on nine hits and struck out four. Duresky went seven for the Mariners and took the loss, giving up two earned runs on nine hits and striking out seven. Omtvedt had three hits for the Agates and Kempffer added a pair. Koehler and Marc Small each had two hits for the Mariners.

The Agates softball squad also defeated the Mariners 6-2.

Senior Savannah Juenemann had a stellar game, pitching seven innings with nine strikeouts and only one walk. She also had a hit on offense, along with senior Molly O'Meara, junior Lindsay Anderson and eighth-grader Brianna McGarth. Bemlott took the loss for the Mariners, who couldn't muster much offense against the Agates.

Mariner track

The Mariner boys track team was 9th out of 15 teams at the Golden Bear Invite in Eveleth. Hank Bemlott won the 110 hurdles in a time of 15:40 and Kyle Blood was second in the 1600-meter run with a time of 4:48:92. The girls were 12th out of 15 teams and Abby Michels was 2nd in the 400 meter run with a time of 1:03:90.

Gunnar Frahm finished first in the 100-meter hurdles race at the junior varsity championships last Wednesday at Barnum. Michael Fischer finished first in the JV long jump field and the 100-meter dash in a time of 12.80.

Two Harbors track

The Two Harbors junior varsity track team already competed in its championships last Wednesday at Barnum High School with some great results. The team placed in the top two for junior varsity and junior high boys and girls--and topped the field for the junior high boys. There were also a number of first-place finishes on the team.

In the junior high events, the 4x200-meter girls' relay team won in 2:05.02. Ian Johnson and Ross Spencer placed first and second in the 200-meter hurdles race with times of 30.91 and 32.80. The boys 4x100 team got first in 52.53. Macey Jones won the 200-meter hurdles race in 34.18 and the 100-meter version in 20.11. Kiviok Hight finished first in the 1600-meter race in 5:20.64. Katie Holbeck won the 100-meter dash junior high division in 14.88.

On the field end of the event, Two Harbors also performed strongly. Jessie Juenemann won the JV triple jump and discus throw.

In JV track events, Davey Keranen won the boys' 200-meter dash in 25.90 and Juenemann won the girls' field in 28.73. She also finished in the top spot in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.30. The boys' 4x100-meter relay team won their event in 51.42.

On May 7, the varsity team competed in Pierz, Minn., at the Section 7A True Team Championships. The girls finished sixth of nine teams and the boys finished seventh of eight teams.

Last Friday, they headed to Denfeld to participate in the Matt Kero invitational, where the girls finished sixth of 11 teams and the boys placed eighth out of 10 teams.

There were two first-place finishes at the meet: sophomore Casey Cross won the shot put contest and sophomore Shannon Lysaker topped the field in high jump. Madisen Stroozas, a senior, place third in the discus throw.

Sophomore Leann Fynboh finished second in the 400-meter dash with a time of 64.06. Junior Drew Christensen came in third in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.95.

The team hosted the conference tournament on Wednesday.

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