Spartans hold on for 3-2 win over Greyhounds
By: Ken Olson, Superior Telegram
DULUTH — The third time was a charm for the Superior High School baseball team.
Having already lost to the Duluth East Greyhounds twice this season, the Spartans turned things around with a 3-2 victory Thursday evening at Wade Stadium, but it didn’t come easy.
With Superior leading 3-0, East scored runs in the fifth and sixth innings and then loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the seventh.
Superior pitcher Ryan Myhre, who allowed seven hits in the final three innings, regrouped and sealed the win for the Spartans by striking out the final two batters.
“It got a little scary, but I buckled down and was able to come through in the clutch,” Myhre said. “After they loaded the bases, I just focused, concentrated on Robby Dembroski’s (Superior’s catcher) glove and threw strikes.”
Grand Rindal was the winning pitcher, allowing one hit with two strikeouts and three walks in 3 2/3 innings. Myhre finished up with four strikeouts and one walk.
“We got good pitching from both guys,” SHS coach Don Dembroski said. “When they got the lead-off double and we dropped an infield pop-up in the seventh, I thought we were in trouble. But Ryan finished strong.
“It was good that we played East twice this week. They’re one of the top teams in the area, and with a tight game like this, hopefully we learned something and it helps prepare us for Eau Claire North on Saturday and then Eau Claire Memorial.”
The Spartans (12-8) wrap up their regular season by hosting Eau Claire North in a doubleheader at 11 a.m. Saturday. The Huskies received the No. 1 seed in the upcoming WIAA playoffs.
Superior, the No. 10 seed, opens WIAA play Tuesday at No. 7 Eau Claire Memorial. The game begins at 6 p.m. at Carson Park.
Taylor Olson led Superior on offense Thursday with two doubles, two RBIs and a run scored.
After doubling in the third inning, the senior scored Superior’s first run when Dylan Ramage reached on an error.
Olson then belted a two-run double in the fourth inning for a 3-0 Superior lead. Scoring on the hit were Nik Mattson, who was hit by a pitch, and Trent Olson, who reached on a fielder’s choice.
“I was just looking to hit my pitch, I didn’t want to swing at anything I couldn’t drive,” Taylor Olson said. “On the first double, I just didn’t want to chase anything and let the pitcher get ahead of me.”
East defeated Superior 11-4 earlier in the season and 3-2 on Thursday.
“It was kind of a three-game series, like in the major leagues,” Olson said. “We saw their best pitcher in Mickey Keuning, and they saw our best. So it was finally nice to come out on top.”
Superior also got hits from Nick Sitek, Zach Magdzas, Myhre and Nik Mattson.
For East, Neil Walsh doubled and singled; Aaron Grossman singled twice and knocked in a run; Brody Olson hit a RBI single; and Matt Johnson, Nick Carlson and Zach Farmer singled.
SPARTAN SPIN: East stranded 10 runners on base, including bases loaded in the seventh inning and two each in the fourth through sixth innings. ... The Spartans JV lost 14-4. Taavi Mattson started and pitched three innings, allowing eight runs (six earned) on seven hits and one walk. Colton Yepma and Dane Sislo pitched in relief. The Spartans had five hits with Jordan Hughes leading the way with two hits. Clayton Yeazle, Sislo and Jarrett Byrnes had the other hits.