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by Marlys Kruger
COLFAX — After the Colfax baseball team played a near perfect game at Durand a couple of weeks ago in a 2-1 win, the tide certainly changed as they hosted those same Panthers Monday, May 9 and dropped the contest 13-5. Three days later they remained on their home field and faced the Spring Valley Cardinals and lost 16-9.
Both games were Dunn-St. Croix Conference games, putting the Vikings conference record at 4-7 and overall record at 5-9.
The Vikings have just three regular season games remaining before tournaments begin May 26. They hosted Elk Mound on Monday, May 16 and have Elmwood/Plum City coming to town on Thursday. Colfax will then finish their conference and regular season at Elk Mound next Tuesday, May 24.
In the first go-round, Colfax pitcher Jamison Flatland threw a one hitter and the Vikings played errorless ball.
But, this game played out much different as the Viking defense fell apart, committing seven errors in the game. Flatland gave up seven hits and 11 runs but seven of them were unearned. He whiffed eight Panthers and walked a pair in 3 1/3 innings. Mitch Medin finished off the game, allowing one hit, two runs with three Ks and one free pass.
The Vikings held a 5-1 lead after two innings of play but eight runs by the Panthers on some solid hits and Viking miscues gave them a 9-5 advantage. The Vikings failed to put any more runs up while Durand tacked on two in the fourth and another pair in the sixth.
Dylyn Hiitola slammed a double and knocked in a pair of runs while scoring once, Medin banged his own double and picked up a couple of RBIs, Bryce Sikora swiped two bases and Elijah Entzminger also had a stolen base.
Spring Valley started their ace pitcher Conner Ducklow who kept the Colfax batters in check for the first three innings as they built up an 8-0 lead.
Colfax broke though for a run in the third and four in the fourth against a different Cardinal hurler to close the gap at 10-5.
After the Cardinals tacked on four more runs in the fifth inning, the Vikings’ Austin Swanson had the biggest hit of his career with a two out, bases loaded double that brought Medin, Flatland and Anderson home, leaving Colfax down 14-8.
Spring Valley added single runs in the sixth and seventh but the Vikings could only scratch one more run across in the seventh before ending on a ground out with two runners on base.
Entzminger batted 2-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored, lead-off batter Anderson did his job, reaching base three times with a hit and two base on balls and he scored all three times. Hiitola banged a double with two RBIs and Flatland smacked a two bagger and came home twice.
Sikora started on the mound and gave up eight runs but with the team committing nine errors in the contest, only five of those runs were earned. Medin came in at the bottom of the second and went five innings, also allowing eight runs with three earned but whiffed seven Cardinal batters, and Mason Yarrington came in to get the final out.