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Area Male Athlete: W-DC's Dykhoff silencing opponents

Jake Dykhoff just knows how to rise to the occasion. Ask any team he pitches against. The senior for the Wadena-Deer Creek Wolverines dished out an 8-0 shutout over the previously unbeaten Pequot Lakes Patriots May 14. He did himself one better d...

Jake Dykhoff
Jake Dykhoff

 

Jake Dykhoff just knows how to rise to the occasion.

Ask any team he pitches against.

The senior for the Wadena-Deer Creek Wolverines dished out an 8-0 shutout over the previously unbeaten Pequot Lakes Patriots May 14. He did himself one better during a 2-0 victory over Perham May 22, tossing a no-hitter.

"The big thing for Jake is he thrives off big games and tough competition. You see an undefeated Pequot Lakes team in front of you, I guess the adrenaline gets going and he was fired up," W-DC head coach Kyle Dykhoff said. "He threw nothing but strikes. He was efficient on the mound. All of his pitches were working. He was clocked at 89 mph that game so you know he was amped up."

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Jake Dykhoff struck out 12 Patriots, walked none and allowed just four hits.

"Things come easy when you have all three pitches because you can keep hitters off balance," Kyle Dykhoff said. "That's what he did with the offspeed, but yet could put them away with an 89 mph fastball at any time. It was a good combination of changing speeds."

In a 2-1 victory over Ottertail Central May 1, he struck out 14, walked two and allowed one run on four hits. He also went 2-3 with a double and RBI in that win.

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Jake Dykhoff

  • Year: Senior
  • School: Wadena-Deer Creek
  • Sport: Baseball
  • Position: Pitcher, catcher, shortstop
  • Highlights: Struck out 12, walked none and allowed just four hits against Pequot Lakes and went 3-4 with a double and two RBIs against Ottertail Central

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In a crucial Section 8-2A game against Perham, Dykhoff struck out 10, walked none and didn't allow a hit. The victory pushed W-DC higher in the section standings for playoff seedings.

"I was throwing my fastball real well," Jake Dykhoff said. "I didn't have to throw too many curveballs and then just a few changeups to keep them off balance. I guess everything was working right against Perham.

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"It was a big game and when they're big games that adrenaline gets going and I seem to get looser and I was throwing harder. It's just more exciting pitching in those big games."

Dykhoff owns a fastball, changeup and slider and the reputation of being hard to get a hit off of. Kyle Dykhoff can see it in opposing players.

"Kids know when he's out there they already know they have to play flawlessly to have a chance that day," the coach said.

And there's a reason for it. He's been shutting people down for five years now. For his career, Dykhoff has pitched 204 1/3 innings. He owns a 23-10 record with a 1.82 ERA. He's struck out 328 batters and allowed 150 hits and 52 walks. His innings pitched, wins and strikeouts are all school records.

And those numbers have caught the attention of the state. He was named to the Minnesota State High School Baseball Coaches Association Play Ball All-Star Series June 22-23 at Chaska Athletic Park. He's also in the running to be a candidate for the Play Ball! Minnesota Mr. Baseball Award.

And it's not just for his pitching.

In a 9-3 victory over Menahga May 17 to seal the Park Region Conference title with a 13-1 record, Dykhoff finished 2-3 with a double, two RBIs and two runs scored. He was also hit by a pitch.

"He's a very aggressive hitter," Kyle Dykhoff said. "There have been games where he's seen five or six pitches in five at bats because he wants to go up there and hit it. He has 11 walks this year, all but two of them are intentional. It's fun to watch him at the plate because if he gets one over the strike zone he usually puts a pretty good swing on it. If he gets out, it's because he gets himself out and swings at a bad pitch."

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He finished 3-3 with five runs scored, two doubles and an RBI in a 18-11 win over Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale May 11.

He owns a career batting average of .455 (145-319). He's posted 78 runs, 42 doubles, four triples, three home runs, 90 RBIs, 37 walks to just 14 strikeouts, 46 stolen bases and 13 sacrifices.

Jake Dykhoff said teams are picking up on his aggressive mentality and not throwing many first-pitch strikes to him. He's adjusted and it's also helped to have a talented team around him.

"Our expectations are to go to state," Jake Dykhoff said. "This team is led by strong senior leaders this year. There's five of us that have been playing on the varsity level for four or five years now. We've had a lot of disappointment in the playoffs, but we're confident we can make a good run in the playoffs this year."

 

Other notable performances:

Baseball: Jake Kapphahn, Little Falls, went 2-4 with two home runs and four RBIs against Foley.

Brandon Wolske, Pine River-Backus, went 3-3 with five RBIs, three runs, a double and a triple against Lake of the Woods. He was 2-4 with a double, triple, four RBIs and three runs scored against Red Lake.

A.J. Jenks, Little Falls, finished with a home run, double and four RBIs against Zimmerman.

Josh Bounds, Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale, finished 3-3 with three doubles and three RBIs against Menahga.

Nick Ackerman, Pine River-Backus, went 3-4 with two doubles and seven RBIs and three runs scored against Red Lake.

Josh Doss, Pillager, hit a walk-off home run against Royalton. It was his second homer of the week.

Golf: Cayden Turk, Crosby-Ironton, shot a 75 to win the Mid-State Conference individual title at The Preserve at Grand View Lodge.

Track and field: Reid Pierzinski, Pequot Lakes, won the 200-meter dash, 110 and 300 hurdles and triple jump at the Mid-State Conference Championship.

Samuel Moore, Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale, won the shot put and discus at the Park Region Conference championship.

Covering the Brainerd lakes area sports scene for the past 23 years.
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