SLATER - The No. 8 (Class 3A) Ballard baseball team saw its 12-game winning streak snapped with a 5-3 home loss to Boone Friday.
Both teams had eight hits. Boone had two doubles and a home run, and Ballard picked up four doubles.
Boone committed one error in the field and Ballard went error-free. The difference came in Boone’s slight edge in strikeouts, preventing Ballard from stringing any rallies together.
Boone went up 3-1 with a three-run second inning. Ballard pulled within 3-2 after three innings, but the Toreadors scored twice in the top of the fourth and the Bombers could only answer with one run in the bottom of the inning.
Neither team was able to get on the scoreboard over the final three innings. The loss put Ballard at 12-2 overall and 6-1 in the Raccoon River Conference and Boone won its fourth in a row to improve to 11-5 and 3-1 respectively.
Reece Huen was 3-for-3 with two doubles and three runs, Cody Wolfe 2-for-4 with an RBI and Kade Reinertson 2-for-4 with a double to lead Ballard offensively. Brooks Fleischmann doubled and drove in a run and Kyler Watson walked and scored.
Wolfe was the losing pitcher, giving up five runs on six hits and one walk with six strikeouts in four innings. Jack Luster struck out five and issued two hits and one walk in three scoreless innings of relief.
Spencer Turner struck out 13 and allowed two earned runs on seven hits and two walks in six innings as the winning Boone pitcher. Brett Price homered and drove in two runs and Jake Lewis doubled and knocked in a pair for the Toreadors.
Boone 5, Ballard 3
Boone 030 200 0 - 5 8 1
Ballard 101 100 0 - 3 8 0
Boone: Spencer Turner, Jake Lewis (7) and Dylan Bangs.
Ballard: Cody Wolfe, Jack Luster (5) and Kade Reinertson.
2B: Boone - Lewis, Tegan Bock. Ballard - Reece Huen 2, Reinertson, Brooks Fleischmann.
HR: Boone - Brett Price.
CARROLL - For the third game in a row, Ballard received a dominant pitching performance in a 4-0 victory over Carroll June 12.
Connor Finch became the third Bomber in a row to fire a complete game. Finch tossed a six-hit shutout with seven strikeouts and just one walk to help the No. 8 team in Class 3A win its 12th in a row to improve to 12-1 overall and 6-0 in the Raccoon River Conference.
Ballard scored one run in the top of the first and three more in the third. The Bombers finished with eight hits and they only had one error on defense.
Cody Wolfe was 2-for-3 with two doubles, a run and three RBIs and Sam Petersen went 2-for-3 with a triple and two runs to pace Ballard offensively. Kade Reinertson doubled and knocked in a run and Reece Huen, Jack Luster and Kyler Watson each picked up one hit.
Devin Baack took the loss for Carroll after allowing four earned runs on eight hits and a walk with three strikeouts, going all seven innings. Baack, Ty Nissen, Slade Sibenaller, Ryan Johnston, Kayd Nissen and Nick Haberl each picked up one hit for the Tigers, who fell to 5-6 overall and 0-3 in the conference.
Ballard 4, Carroll 0
B 103 000 0 - 4 8 1
C 000 000 0 - 0 6 1
B: Connor Finch and Kade Reinertson.
C: Devin Baack and Kayd Nissen.
2B: B - Cody Wolfe 2, Reinertson.
3B: B - Sam Petersen.
SLATER - With the curve ball working, Nic Edwards turned in a masterful performance on the mound for Ballard in its 10-1 victory over Nevada Tuesday at Nite Hawk Field.
Edwards threw a three-hitter with seven strikeouts and two walks to help the Bombers, ranked eighth in Class 3A, pick up their 11th victory in a row after a season-opening loss to Dallas Center-Grimes.
Offense has garnered most of the headlines for Ballard during its hot start. The Bombers have scored 91 runs — an average of 7.6 per game — and are hitting .328 with 40 steals and 29 extra-base hits through the Nevada game.
But pitching and defense have always been the key ingredients to forming championship teams in baseball. Edwards’ performance against Nevada showed that Ballard can take care of business on that end, too.
“It makes it extremely hard to beat us,” Ballard head coach Nick Steenhagen said. “Nick battled tonight.”
Edwards suffered an ankle injury toward the end of basketball season. He was able to compete in track, but wasn’t 100 percent.
In his first outing against a strong Gilbert team on June 4, Edwards was a little shaky. Edwards gave up seven earned runs on nine hits 5 ⅔ innings, but the Bomber bats came through in a 13-10 victory over the Tigers.
On Tuesday, Edwards looked like a different pitcher.
“He proved he’s the guy we thought he was,” Steenhagen said. “We knew he had good stuff and it was good to see that now we’ve got another guy we can go to without any hesitation.”
Edwards threw the fourth seven-inning complete game for Ballard on the season. He only gave up one hit over the first four innings to help the Bombers get out to a 7-0 lead.
Edwards’ curve constantly left Nevada hitters off balance. He also did a good job spotting his fast ball.
“I threw first-pitch strikes, so I feel like that helped me a lot,” Edwards said. “Getting on top of the hitters and really letting my junk work tonight worked really well for me.”
The only inning he showed a little vulnerability was the top of the fifth.
Nevada’s Keaton Fry drew a walk, Thomas Crawford singled and Ty Dittmer walked to lead off the inning. An errant pickoff attempt allowed Fry to cross home plate with the only Cub run.
But Edwards came back to force James Carsrud to pop up and Cael Franzen to ground out to short to get out of the jam, suffering limited damage.
Edwards didn’t walk another batter and only gave up one hit over the final two innings.
“When we have a pitcher like Nic on the mound and he’s spotting up all his pitches — his curve, his changeup, his fastball — it makes us as an offense work even harder,” Bomber first baseman Cody Wolfe said. “We want to help him out so we can take even more pressure off his shoulders.”
The Bomber offense totaled 11 hits against Nevada. It was the fifth time Ballard has scored at least 10 runs in a game.
“It makes it a lot easier on a pitcher,” Edwards said. “When you can hit the ball like that, we’re going to win a lot of games.”
Ballard scored its first run in the second inning when Wolfe reached on an infield hit and scored on a double by Kade Reinertson. The Bombers plated three runs in each of the next two innings and added three more in the sixth.
Wolfe jumped-started Ballard’s offense, going 2-for-3 with two runs, a steal and an RBI.
“This year I’ve been looking for the holes and trying to find the weaknesses in the defense,” Wolfe said. “It really helps when I have a dugout like these guys cheering us on. It keeps us in the game.”
Reinertson finished with two doubles and four RBIs. Reece Huen and Jack Luster were both 2-for-4, with Huen adding one run and RBI apiece and Luster two runs and a steal.
Sam Petersen was 1-for-3 with three runs and a steal and Kyler Watson 1-for-3 with an RBI. Logan Volkmann added a pinch-hit single and a run.
Nevada fell to 2-7. Cael Franzen gave up five runs — just two earned — on six hits with two strikeouts and walks apiece in 3 ⅓ innings as the losing Cub pitcher.
Fry walked and scored, Grant Higgins had one single and walk apiece and Crawford and Gavin Melohn each singled once for the Cubs.
Ballard 10, Nevada 1
N 000 010 0 - 1 3 2
B 013 303 X - 10 11 1
N: Cael Franzen, James Carsrud (4) and Keaton Fry.
B: Nic Edwards and Kade Reinertson.
2B: B - Reinertson 2, Kyler Watson.
SLATER - Ballard did everything well in disposing of Adel-Desoto-Minburn, 7-0, for a Raccoon River Conference victory June 10 at Nite Hawk Field.
Bomber pitcher Cody Wolfe threw a four-hit shutout and the defense behind him didn’t commit a single error. The Ballard offense pounded out 13 hits and also took advantage of three ADM errors.
Ballard scored its first three runs in the second inning and added another in the third. The Bombers scored twice in the fourth and capped the scoring with a run in the seventh, improving to 10-1 overall and 5-0 in the Raccoon River Conference.
Wolfe struck out five batters and didn’t issue a single walk. He also went 3-for-4 at the plate with a triple and an RBI.
Brooks Fleischmann went 2-for-3 with one run and RBI apiece and Sam Petersen 2-for-4 with a double, run and RBI. Reece Huen was 1-for-4 with one steal, run and RBI apiece; Carson Finch doubled in a run, Jack Luster and Kade Reinertson both singled in a run, Kyler Watson singled and scored and Logan Volkmann chipped in one base hit.
Logan Crannell took the loss for ADM after allowing four earned runs on 10 hits with six strikeouts and no walks in 3 ⅔ innings. Spencer Collins, Zach Fuller, Seth Williamson and Crannell each had a single for the Tigers on offense.
Ballard 7, ADM 0
ADM 000 000 0 - 0 4 3
B 031 201 X - 7 13 0
ADM: Logan Crannell, Seth Williamson (4) and Jaxson Millsap.
B: Cody Wolfe and Kade Reinertson.
2B: B - Sam Peterson, Connor Finch.
3B: B - Wolfe.