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EM baseball goes 2-1 to open season

ELK MOUND — Solid pitching helped the Elk Mound baseball team to a 2-1 start as it finally opened the 2018 season with a three-game home stand at Lions Park last week.

After surrendering ten hits in a 5-4 home loss in the season opener against Fall Creek Monday, April 23, the Mounders pitching staff and offense showed improvement over its next two contests.

Hosting Pepin/Alma in a non-conference tilt Thursday, April 26, a trio of Elk Mound pitchers allowed the Eagles just two hits and a run. A good thing too as the Mounders collected just five hits of their own but were able to prevail 4-1.

The following day, Elk Mound welcomed Glenwood City to Lions Park for the Dunn-St. Croix conference opener. Not only was the Mounders’ pitching nearly untouchable once again but the offense finally came alive, pounding Hilltopper pitching for 15 hits   in a 12-2, five-inning victory.

The Mounders are scheduled to play four games, all on the road, over the next eight days. They traveled to Durand Monday, will face the Bulldogs in Boyceville Thursday, and head to Hammond for a non-conference contest against St. Croix Central. Elk Mound will then wrap up the road swing in Plum City next Monday, May 7 against Elmwood-Plum City.

Fall Creek

The Mounders season opening game against Fall Creek April 23 was a back-and-forth affair that went to extra innings before a victor was determined.

The Crickets struck for a hit and a run off of Mounders’ reliever Todd Blaze to take a 5-4 lead in the top of the eighth inning and then held Elk Mound scoreless in the bottom half of the frame for the win.

Elk Mound grabbed an early 2-0 lead with single runs in the first and second innings only to have Fall Creek plate a pair of runs in the top of the third to knot the game.

The Mounders retook the lead with a run in the bottom half but the Crickets responded with single runs in the sixth and seventh for a 4-3 lead.

The Mounders were able to tie the game and force extra innings with a run in the bottom of the seventh.

Fall Creek collected ten hits on Mounders pitching.

Dylan Curry threw three innings surrendering five hits and two runs and Ethan Kjellberg was tagged for four hits over four innings of work and two runs.

Blaze threw in the eight frame and took the loss.

Chase Rhude and Nate Lew both finished 2-for-4 at the plate with Lew hitting for a single and a double. Brett Lew also added a double and Logan Bergh singled.

Pepin/Alma

The Mounders made the most of their five hits, scoring four runs to defeat visiting Pepin/Alma in an April 26 non-conference showdown.

Elk Mound scored all the runs it would need when it plated three runs in the bottom of the second.

The Eagles got on the scoreboard with a run in the top of the third only to see the Mounders take it back in the bottom half.

Neither team scored in the final four frames as Elk Mound prevailed 4-1 in seven innings.

Todd Blaze took the pitching victory giving up just one hit and the Eagle lone run in five innings of work. Dylan Curry and Ethan Kjellberg each threw an inning with Pepin/Alma picking up its other hit against Kjellberg.

Blaze allowed with Chase Rhude, Jonas Kohls, Dylan Black and Dakota Bell had singles to account for the Mounders’ five hits.

Glenwood City  

Elk Mound feasted on Glenwood City pitching when the Hilltoppers visited Elk Mound Lions Park last Friday.

The Mounders banged out 15 hits, highlighted by a trio of doubles with one each from Brett Lew, Ethan Kjellberg and Dylan Black, en route to a 12-2 victory in five innings.

Kjellberg, who aided his cause with three RBIs, got the start and pitched four and two-thirds innings allowing Glenwood City just two hits in picking up his first win of the season. He register seven strikeouts and just two walks.

Elk Mound scored runs in all five innings – two runs each in the first, second, third and fifth and four runs in the fourth.

Dakota Bedell had three hits in four plate appearances while Black, Kjellberg and Logan Bergh each had a pair.