ROCK VALLEY-After trailing 1-0 after the first inning, the Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley defense and pitching staff held strong to allow its offense to score twice in the sixth and escape with a 2-1 Siouxland Conference baseball victory over Okoboji Monday, June 5.
“It was a pitchers’ dual; both pitchers pitched really well,” said Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley coach Doug Bundy. “He (Zach Noble) has had two real good outings before. This is probably his best outing. He competed. The (only) mistake he made was the first batter. He had an 0-2 count on the first batter. I think he missed his spot and the kid hit it. They got a double out of it and then the next kid got a base hit and that’s how they got their run. If Zach had that pitch back, I don’t know if they would have got the run. He pitched great.”
Noble went all seven innings, allowed four hits, one earned run, one walk and racked up eight strikeouts.
The Nighthawks only mustered two hits in the game, but it was enough for the win. Mitchell Diekevers went 1-for-3 with an RBI. Noble was 1-for-2 at the plate including a double. Shane Solberg and Cade Moser each scored a run.
“We struggled (offensively), but you’ve got to give credit to (Matt) Eckard from Okoboji,” Bundy said. “He’s one of the best pitchers in the conference. He kept us off balance, but we battled and I told the kids to just keep chipping away and something will happen. (Brett) Moser drew that walk, which was key, that leadoff walk in the sixth. Then they (Okoboji) had the throwing error and then Mitchell Diekevers had a big base hit. I was pretty sure Zach wasn’t going to give up many runs so that was good.”
Bundy credited his defense for keeping his team in the game.
“We have been (playing well on defense),” said Bundy. “I’ve said this before, if we make the plays we’re supposed to make and we throw strikes, we’ll be fine and that’s what we did last night. Defense has been pretty solid,” he said.
Nighthawks have first ‘balanced’ game of the season
Nathan Broek | Sports Editor
ORANGE CITY-For the first time this season. Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley had all three phases of baseball working in harmony for its Siouxland Conference contest with MOC-Floyd Valley Wednesday, June 7, and came away with a convincing 12-2 victory.
The Dutch took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning before the Nighthawks tallied five in the top of the third for a 5-1 advantage. MOC-Floyd Valley countered with a single run in the bottom of the third to shrink Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley’s lead to 5-2, but the Nighthawks pulled away with one in the top of fourth, five in the top of the sixth and one in the top of the seventh.
“We finally got some key hits. In the first few innings we left some guys on base, but in the third inning when we got five we got some key hits and then again we got some key hits in the sixth,” said Nighthawks’ coach Doug Bundy. “We had some key guys get some key hits in key times for us, which we needed to happen.”
Those key players included Shane Solberg going 2-for-4 at the dish with two runs and one RBI; Jackson Mulder with one hit and three runs scored; Brett Moser going 3-for-5 with two runs and three RBIs; Dylan Van Der Brink with a hit, two runs and one RBI; Zach Noble going a perfect 3-for-3 with three RBIs; Garret Greenfield with a hit and one RBI and Cade Moser with one hit and one RBI.
On defense, Mitchell Diekevers threw seven innings and gave up four hits, two runs that were both earned, two walks and four strikeouts. The seven guys behind Diekevers came up with three double plays.
“Mitchell threw well. He only threw 78 pitches for all seven innings, which is awesome,” Bundy said. “The defense behind him was good. We turned three double plays behind him. So that helped and I don’t think we had an error. We were errorless, which was perfect. First time all year.”
Bundy was pleased to see all three phases of the game work together for the first time this season.
“I think that was our most balanced game as far as hitting and pitching and defense. It was all pretty good last night,” Bundy said.
Solberg leads Nighthawks’ offense in 12-2 victory
SIBLEY-In baseball, a leadoff man does everything he can to get on base and allow the guys behind him to try and drive him in. Shane Solberg of Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley did just that in a Siouxland Conference game against Sibley-Ocheyedan Thursday, June 8, and the Nighthawks came away with a 12-2 victory.
Solberg ended the night as the leading hitter for Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley going 4-for-5 (a season-high so far) with one hit being a double, two runs, three RBIs and one stolen base.
“He’s a good hitter, he’s our leadoff man and he set the table for us,” said Nighthawks’ coach Doug Bundy. “He’s hit well ever since he’s played varsity as a sophomore. He just finds a way. He really hit the ball well last night.”
Solberg indeed set the tone early, leading off the game with a single that soon led to three first-inning runs. That allowed Jackson Mulder, who made his first start as pitcher, to settle into the game. Mulder surrendered a run in the bottom of the first, but only allowed one other run the rest of the way. His final stat total was six innings of work with five hits, two runs of which only one was earned, two walks and two strikeouts.
“That (the three-run first inning) was nice for Jackson. That (inning) allowed him to relax a little bit,” Bundy said. “Jackson throws strikes and is always around the plate. He’s not as fast as Mitchell (Diekevers) or Zach (Noble) but he does hit his spots, he keeps them (the opponent) off balance and he does a nice job of letting his defense play behind him.”
The rest of the offense then picked him up, scoring one in the second, five in the third, two in the sixth and one in the seventh. A big punch during those frames was a two-run triple by Noble. Other offensive numbers included Mulder with one hit, one run and two RBIs; Diekevers with a hit and one RBI; Trey Huyser driving in a run off a Generals’ error and Garrett Greenfield with one hit, one run and one RBI.
“Everybody, one-through-nine, is hitting the ball. It’s good to see finally,” Bundy said. “The bottom of the order was struggling a little bit earlier in the year and they’re finally starting to put it together. We had 12 hits last night and we had 13 against MOC-Floyd Valley on Wednesday. That’s much better.”
B-H/RV downs Sioux Center for first place in the conference
ROCK VALLEY-It was a battle for sole possession of first place in the Siouxland Conference, but the Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley baseball team took that lead right from the first inning en route to a 11-4 victory over Sioux Center Friday, June 9.
The Nighthawks scored five runs in the first inning and it all started with Shane Solberg’s single. Key hits in the first came from Dylan Harman with a two-run single with two outs and Zach Noble with a one-run single with two outs.
Coach Doug Bundy felt the five-run inning proved to be the key inning for his team.
“It was good. It relaxed us to get five runs in that first inning. It was good to see that,” he said.
Despite the fact this was a big conference game early in the season, Bundy felt his team was comfortable coming into the contest.
“The guys were relaxed. We played three good games coming up to this one and we just take one game at a time. This game was not any bigger than the one against Sibley,” he said.
That relaxed momentum carried over into the rest of the game. After the Warriors tallied one run in the top of the second, Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley scored one in the third, two in the fifth and three in the sixth. Sioux Center scored their final runs with one in the sixth and two in the seventh.
“We played well. The kids were relaxed, the kids had fun and that’s what baseball should be about,” Bundy said.
Offensive leaders included Solberg going 3-for-3 at the dish with one run and three RBIs including a double. Noble went 3-for-3 with three runs and two RBIs, one of which was a triple. Cade Moser went 2-for-3 with two runs and two RBIs. Brett Moser went 2-for-4 with one run and one RBI. Harman had one hit, one run and two RBIs. Dylan Van Der Brink had one hit and two runs.
On the mound was Trey Huyser who made his first varsity start as a pitcher. He threw five and two-thirds innings with five hits, two runs of which only one was earned, four walks and four strikeouts. Seth Rozeboom threw the final inning and one-third in relief with two hits, two runs that were both earned, one walk and two strikeouts.
“For Trey it was his first varsity start, so it was big for him and he pitched real well,” Bundy said. “He scattered five hits and gave up just the one earned run. He pitched really well and I’m happy for Trey,” Bundy said.
In order to keep the winning streak going next week, Bundy said his team just needs to keep it simple.
“We just have to come to the ball field ready to play, stay focused, have fun and we’ll be fine,” he said.