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 Bismarck Larks

Larks Walk off Wacky Game on Hill's Hit-By-Pitch

July 29, 2023 - Northwoods League (Northwoods)
Bismarck Larks News Release

Do you like offense? If so, then Friday night's game was for you. The Bismarck Larks closed out a four-game homestand as they took on the Rochester Honkers in the series finale of a two-game. In one of the most unorthodox fashions, the Larks were able to come back from down three in the ninth to walk it off and sweep the Honkers.

The Larks and Honkers combined for 31 runs and 31 hits during the contest. The Honkers scored twice in the first to get the scoring going. Kimo Fukofuka (San Jose State) singled home the first run of the game, and Dario Gomez (Miami) was hit by a pitch.

In the bottom half, the Larks scored four runs of their own. Jack Herring (Rollins) got Bismarck on the board with an RBI walk, and then Luke Hammond (Xavier) topped off the inning with a sacrifice fly to make it 4-2 after one inning.

After that, it was a back-and-forth heavyweight boxing match between these two teams. After a scoreless second, both teams put up two in the third, and then in the fourth, Rochester went for four runs. Dario Gomez had a two-RBI single, and Cody Borraggine (San Joaquin Delta) brought home a run of his own to give the Honkers an 8-6 lead. Rochester added another two in the fifth and the sixth to make it 12-6.

However, the Larks would start to creep back in the sixth, using five runs thanks in part to a Dillon Goetz (Skyline) two-RBI double and a sacrifice fly from Dante Leach (Tennessee Wesleyan). They trailed by one going to the seventh, and in that frame, the yellow birds tied the game at 12-all on a Brock Kleszcz (UC San Diego) double that scored Jack Herring.

The Honkers wouldn't make it easy on the Larks, however. Rochester scored three in the eighth, with Dario Gomez striking again for RBIs five and six on the night to give the Honkers a 15-12 lead heading to the ninth.

But a three-run deficit was no problem for the cardiac Larks. After Benjamin Rosengard (Rice) tied it with an RBI base hit with two outs, Garret Hill (North Dakota State) was hit in the foot with the bases loaded, and the Larks walked it off to win 16-15 and sweep the Honkers.

On the mound, Larks starter Andrew Hansen (Fort Hays State) threw the Metro Area Fastest Pitch of the Game at 88 mph in the second inning, but it was Jacob Arndt (Missouri - St. Louis) that picked up his second win in two nights to move to 3-0. Sam Hanson (Seattle) got the loss for Rochester.

The Fetzer Electric Play of the Game came in the top of the fifth inning when Brock Kleszcz gunned a runner out at home for his second outfield assist of the season to end the frame and save a run.

The Larks will travel for one final road series of the season on Saturday, going west to St. Cloud for a two-game set. First pitch for game one is at 6:05 p.m. CT. The Home Run Challenge and Great Plains All-Star Game, presented by H A Thompson and Sons, is up next at Bismarck Municipal Ballpark. On Monday, Watch the top power hitters in the league go head-to-head in the Northwoods League Home Run Challenge. Plus, fans will have the chance to bid on one-of-a-kind Great Plains East and West jerseys in our jersey auction. Then, on Tuesday, All-Star players from the Northwoods League Great Plains East and West battle in the first-ever All-Star Game to take place at Dakota Community Bank & Trust Field.

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Northwoods League Stories from July 29, 2023

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