After a hard-luck loss to Bozeman in game one, 6-5, at Kindrick Legion Field, the Helena Senators bounced back with a 7-2 win in the nightcap to earn a doubleheader split with the Bucks.
Koby Griffin started the second contest on the mound Sunday for the Senators, and pitched five innings of 2-run ball for the win. Griffin gave up five hits, struck out five Bozeman batters and walked just one. He gave way to Henry Bowers, who after one out was relieved by Danny Burton. Burton closed the door over the final 1 2/3 stanzas for the save.
Bozeman starter Thomas Morris, a 6-foot-6 right hander, took the loss.
Helena’s defense played error free ball in the field.
Burton was also a perfect 4 for 4 at the plate on the day, with a double and a pair of RBIs. Reilly Leary went 4-7 for both games, while driving in four runs.
Senators collecting two base knocks on the day were Ryan Dorvall and Carter Pappas. Griffin, Carter and Kienan Steif each stroked a double, while Steif finished with two RBIs.
“We put together a nice, all-around performance in that second game,” said coach Dave Thennis, whose Senators stand at 11-4 on the year. “Koby was really good on the mound, and Danny finished it up.”
In the opener, the two teams entered the top of the seventh inning tied at 6-all. Bennett Hostetler led off with a double for the Bucks, advanced to third on Bailey Paddock’s sacrifice bunt and then scored the deciding run on a groundball fielder’s choice by Jenner Kearns.
Alex Ekstrom pitched the win, in relief of Adam Hubley. Ekstrom permitted two hits and one run in three innings. Ryan Dorvall started for the Capital City club and went 3 2/3 innings. He gave way to Riley Pickens in the fourth, who was saddled with the loss.
Both teams committed three errors each in the first game, although the home team’s were arguably more costly.
“We came up a little bit short on the scoreboard in game one, and that’s due to really just a couple misplays, at bats and execution,” the Helena skipper related. “However, Bozeman pitched tough, so that has a lot to do with it.”
Curt Synness is on Twitter @curtsynnes_IR and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Game 1 – Bozeman 6, Helena 5
Bozeman 002 300 1 — 6 9 3
Helena 120 110 0 – 5 8 3
Adam Hubley (4), Alex Ekstrom (3); Ryan Dorvall (3.2), Riley Pickens (3.1). W — Ekstrom, L — Pickens.
BOZEMAN — Robert Samson 1-4, Bennett Hostetler 2-4, Bailey Paddock 2-3, Jenner Kearns 1-4, Joel Thayer 2-3, Michael Gunther 0-3, DJ Perdaems 0-3, Conner Tweet 0-2, Austin Frandsen 1-3.
HELENA — Koby Griffin 1-3, Reilly Leary 1-4, Payton Pappas 1-3, Nick Wrigg 0-4, Henry Bowers 1-3, Kienan Stief 0-4, Carter Pappas 1-4, Danny Burton 2-2, Chase Rook 1-3.
2B — Samson, Hostetler, Griffin, C Pappas, Burton; RBIs — Paddock 2, Kearns 2, Leary 2, Samson, Hostetler, Griffin, P Pappas, Burton.
Game 2 – Helena 7, Bozeman 2
Bozeman 200 000 0 – 2 7 1
Helena 040 111 x – 7 10 0
Morris (1.2), Hostetler (3.0), Tweet (1.1); Griffin (5.0), Bowers (.1), Burton (1.2). W — Griffin, L — Morris.
BOZEMAN — Samson 0-3, B Hostetler 1-4, Paddock 2-3, Kearns 2-3, Gunther 2-3, Perdaems 0-2, Morgan Hostetler 0-2, Jake Murfitt 0-2, Adam Hubley 0-1, Tweet 0-1, Tyler Dobie 0-1, Joel Thayer 0-1, Andrew Purpura 0-1.
HELENA (11-4) — Burton 2-2, Leary 3-3, P Pappas 0-3, Stief 1-3, Dorvall 2-4, C Pappas 1-4, Chase Rook 0-3, Pickens 0-3, Jackson Maynard 1-2, Bowers 0-1.
2B — Maynard, Murfitt; RBIs — Leary 2, Stief 2, Burton, Rook, Maynard, Kearns, Gunther.