Despite a late-inning loss to the Glacier B team in a makeup game Monday, the Libby Loggers showed up at Griffin Field to play the Kalispell AA team on Wednesday with fight in their veins, and held the lead for most of the game.
The Loggers held off the Twins early Monday, holding a 2-0 win until the top of the third, when Glacier tied the game up.
Things stayed competitive through the seventh, despite the Twins taking a 4-3 lead, but in the top of the eighth, the Logger defense cracked.
Things didn’t look bad at first, with 2 outs already on the board when Glacier’s Nathan Hader stepped to the plate with bases loaded. Hader hit a fly to center field, earning a double and making two RBIs.
Before Libby shortstop Quade Anderson was able to end the half inning, passing a grounder to second baseman Jeff Offenbecher for the final out, the Twins brought in five more runs.
With no more runs for the Loggers and a final run for Glacier in the ninth, the game ended 12-3, Glacier.
Wednesday was the first time this season that the Loggers have faced the Lakers AA team, but Libby has taken lopsided losses in recent weeks against Kalispell’s B team, with the closest battle coming to a 12-7 Lakers B win on May 30.
But against the Lakers AA team, Libby managed an early lead with the only run scored in each of the first and third innings, both by the Loggers. It wasn’t until the bottom of the sixth that the Lakers were able to seize the lead, which they held to the end.
One difference on the field was the lack of Tim Carvey on the mound against Glacier, though Logger Manager Kelly Morford said it was not his intention to keep Carvey fresh for the Kalispell game.
“We need to take opportunities to develop our pitching staff. Once school gets out and our schedule gets busier, we are going to need some depth,” Morford said.
After the loss to Glacier and a season that has been short on wins, hanging tight with the Lakers’ AA team was a confidence boost, Morford acknowledged, though he said he told the players that they don’t want to “make a habit of taking solace in a close loss.”
Early lead, late fall
Against Kalispell, Libby’s Quade Anderson started off the scoring on the third at-bat for the Loggers, knocking a line drive to center field for a double that sent Carvey home.
In the bottom of the first, third baseman Garrett Gollahon picked off a grounder for a quick snap to first baseman Trey Thompson and an out. In the outfield, Chris Auge caught a fly out, and Carvey ended the inning with Kalispell’s Logan Siblurud struck out looking.
In the second, both teams kept the defense tight, with the only base taken by Libby’s Alex Svendsbye on a walk.
An error from Kalispell in the top of the third opened the door for Jeff Offenbecher to score, with Quade Anderson reaching first on the same play.
In the bottom, the Loggers kept things smooth and fast on the defense. Gollahon and Thompson coordinated another ground-out at first, catcher Quade Anderson caught a pop foul for the second out, and shortstop Austin McCully passed a grounder to Svendsbye at second to end the inning with a forced out.
The Lakers scored their first run in the fourth. Despite McCully and Thompson getting a ground out at first on Kalispell’s Sam Elliot, Evan Todd slipped by the Logger defense to score.
In the fifth, Libby made consistent contact at bat, but couldn’t get the ball past the Kalispell fielders, and Kalispell’s Brandon Jordan tied up the game in the bottom of the inning.
Jordan’s run was earned the hard way, taking a walk after getting hit by a pitch from Carvey. After a series of attempts by Carvey to pick Jordan off at first, an error at second gave Jordan the opening he needed to reach third, followed by a scored run on a wild pitch.
Yet, Jordan was the only Lakers player not to end his at-bat in an out that inning.
Todd didn’t take it easy on the Loggers when their turn came, ending the top of the sixth with three strikeouts in a row.
It was not until the bottom of the sixth, though, when things fell apart for the Loggers.
Early in the half inning, the bases were loaded when Kalispell’s Elliot got a single off a fly to center field, and both Todd and Randy Stultz scored on the same play.
On the next play, Johan Fruedenburg singled on a grounder to center field, but with the Kalispell runners already on second and third after taking advantage of a wild pitch, the play ended with two more RBIs.
Kalispell’s Jordan struck out to Carvey without swinging for the first out. But after Carvey allowed a hit and a walk, Gollahon came in to pitch with the bases loaded.
Carvey still made the second out of the inning for the Loggers, catching a pop fly at shortstop on the next play.
The final Laker run of the inning came from Fruedenburg, who scored off an error at third on a grounder from Stultz.
Kalispell scored their final run of the game in the seventh, after a fly out by Jordan allowed Dawson Smith to tag up and make it home.
The Loggers held the Lakers in the eighth, but despite hits from Gollahon and Svendsbye in the eigth and ninth innings, were unable to get any more runs on the board.
The big innings have been an issue for the Loggers, Morford said. In several of their losses, Libby has kept the game competitive early, but seen it slip away from them in the final innings.
“When we don’t field sacrifice bunts and make errors, we are asking to get into trouble like that,” Morford said.
Looking back, there were moments that could have gone better in the earlier innings as well, and Morford said the Loggers did a good job keeping early mistakes from snowballing into more errors.
The lineup is still coming together for the Loggers, Morford said. More than any year he has been a part of the program, there remains some uncertainty where players are going to ultimately fit best. But, that also means that there are opportunities for players who want to claim a position to prove themselves.
At bat, Morford said he wants to see the team continue to get more aggressive.
“We have been really timid in situations where we really need to put a good swing on one. We just need to change our mentality up there a little bit, especially with runners in scoring position,” he said.
Monday, June 4
Glacier 12, Libby 3
G 002 000 271 - R:12 H:10 E:5
L 110 000 100 - R:3 H:3 E:4
G: Billy Barrett 4-0, 2R, 2B; Jack Price 4-1, 2R, 2B, 1K; Nathan Hader 4-3, 1R, 1B; Nick Veneman 6-2, 1R; Trenton Tyree 6-2, 1R; Austyn Andrachick 3-1, 1R, 3B; Jay Tyree 4-0, 2B, 2K; Gavin Schroeder 2-0, 1B, 1K; Myles Hartley 1-0, 1R, 1B, 1K; Jace Crabb 2-1, 3R, 1B
L: Tim Carvey 5-0, 3K; Jeff Offenbecher 4-1, 1B, 2K; Quade Anderson 3-0, 1R, 2B, 1K; Garrett Gollahon 4-0, 1R, 1K; Austin McCully 3-0, 2B, 1K; Alex Svendsbye 1-0, 1K; Trey Thompson 3-1, 1K; David Salgado 1-0, 1K; Joe Reynolds 1-0, 1K; Cole Murphy 2-0, 2B, 1K; Moxley Roesler-Begalke 4-0, 1K; Chris Auge 1-1, 1R, 2B; Ethan Borden 1-0, 1K
Batting: 2B - Hader; TB - Price, Hader 4, Veneman 2, Tyree 2, Andrachick, Crabb; Auge, Offenbecher, Thompson; ROE - Barrett, Price; Anderson, Gollahon, Roesler-Begalke; RBI -
Pitching: W-Trenton Tyree 6, 133 P, .534 S%, 2 H, 2 R, 0 ER, 9 SO, 7 BB; Billy Barrett 1, 12 P, .667 S%, 0 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 2 SO, 0 BB; Nathan Hader 2, 41 P, .512 S%, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 4 SO, 2 BB; L-Quade Anderson 5, 90 P, .467 S%, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 SO, 7 BB; Jeff Offenbecher 2.2, 67 P, .567 S%, 6 H, 9 R, 1 ER, 1 SO, 3 BB; Moxley Roesler-Begalke 0.1, 13 P, .308 S%, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 SO, 1 BB; Trey Thompson 1, 26 P, .385 S%, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 SO, 2 BB; Joe Reynolds 0.1, 3 P, 1.000 S%, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 SO, 0 BB
Wednesday, June 6
Kalispell AA 8, Libby 2
L 101 000 000 - R:2 H:6 E:5
K 000 115 10X - R:8 H:9 E:2
K: Drew Scherrer 4-0, 1BB; Randy Stultz 5-2, 1R; Evan Todd 4-1, 2R, 1K; Taylor Morton 1-0; Logan Siblurud 4-1, 1R, 3K; Sam Elliot 3-1, 1R; Dawson Smith 1-1, 1R; Johan Fruedenburg 3-1, 1R, 1K; Brandon Jordan 3-0, 1R, 1K; Ryan Symmes 3-1; AJ Jones 1-0; Jonathan Craver 3-1, 1BB
L: Jeff Offenbecher 3-1, 1R, 1BB, 1K; Tim Carvey 4-1, 1R, 1K; Quade Anderson 4-1; Garrett Gollahon 4-2, 1K; Austin McCully 4-0, 3K; Trey Thompson 4-0, 3K; Cole Murphy 1-0, 1BB; Ethan Borden 2-0, 1K; Alex Svendsbye 2-1, 1BB; David Salgado 1-0, 1K; Chris Auge 2-0, 1K; Moxley Roesler-Begalke 1-0, 1BB
Batting: 2B - Anderson, Carvey; TB - Todd, Craver, Stultz 2, Elliot, Fruedenburg, Symmes, Siblurud, Smith; Anderson 2, Carvey 2, Gollahon 2, Offenbecher, Svendsbye; ROE - Morton, Craver, Stultz, Scherrer; Anderson, Svendsbye
Pitching: W - Evan Todd 6.2, 107 P, .617 S%, 3 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 9 SO, 4 BB; Taylor Morton 0.1, 5 P, .600 S%, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 SO, 0 BB; Johan Fruedenburg 2.0, 27 P, .741 S%, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 3 SO, 0 BB; L - Tim Carvey 5.1, 98 P, .571 S%, 8 H, 7 R, 5 ER, 4 SO, 1 BB; Garrett Gollahon 2.2, 45 P, .600 S%, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 2 SO, 1 BB