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Park baseball: Wolfpack shut out in opener

Park will have plenty of opportunities to get their first win after an 8-0 loss in their season opener last week.

Lacking a scrimmage before the first regular season game showed as the Wolfpack fell to Stillwater on Friday, April 11. Wolfpack coach John McGowan typically has his team scrimmage 2-3 times before the first game, but a late winter thaw iced the possibility this year.

“Starting the season without a scrimmage is tough,” McGowan said.

Experience will come quickly this week for Park as it plays five games in six days. Getting the offense churning will rank high on the priority list as they mustered just two hits in the loss to the Ponies at home.

Stillwater broke open a close game in the third inning with three runs. The visitors then tacked on two runs in the sixth and seventh for the win.

Errors plagued the Wolfpack, as did leaving four runners on base. Kyle Strand and Alex Kielsa hit 1-2 and 1-3 respectively. Ryan Banaszewski and Strand both reached on walks.

Kielsa and Strand singled in the bottom of the seventh, and Matt Palmquist reached on a fielder’s choice. A strikeout by the Ponies ended the game with two Wolfpack on base, the most they had the entire game.

“The more at-bats we get, the more pitches we see, the better we’ll be offensively,” McGowan said.

Sam Domeier took the loss on the mound for the Wolfpack in five innings pitched. He threw six strikeouts and walked six. He gave up two earned runs while the Ponies tacked on three more due to fielding errors. Domeier allowed only one hit.

Nick Novak put the first run across for the Ponies in the first inning on a wild pitch. Another run came home on a wild pitch in the three-run third.

Jerrick Drude-Smith pitched the final two innings for Park. He fanned three batters, gave up five hits and allowed two earned runs.

Up next for the Wolfpack (0-1, 0-1 Suburban East), they will visit White Bear Lake (0-2, 0-1 SEC) on Wednesday. The Wolfpack will host North St. Paul on Friday at the University of Minnesota’s Siebert Field.

Park will play at Forest Lake (1-1, 0-1 SEC) on Saturday in a game rescheduled from April 7. Then, the Wolfpack host Hastings (0-3, 0-2 SEC) on Monday, April 21.

—Matthew Davis