Baseball: Warriors' snap skid with crisp victory
Warriors 4, Sartell 1 The key: Starter Jake Meyer and reliever Bryce Flanagan combined to allow two hits Conference: Brd 2-3, S 3-2 Overall: Brd 2-4, S 4-3 Next: Brainerd at Fergus Falls 5 p.m. Thursday. In the midst of a 3-game losing streak, th...
Warriors 4, Sartell 1
The key: Starter Jake Meyer and reliever Bryce Flanagan combined to allow two hits
Conference: Brd 2-3, S 3-2
Overall: Brd 2-4, S 4-3
Next: Brainerd at Fergus Falls 5 p.m. Thursday.
In the midst of a 3-game losing streak, the Brainerd Warriors needed a victory and they needed it quickly and efficiently in frosty 40-degree temperatures.
Senior right-hander Jake Meyer responded in Tuesday's Central Lakes Conference game against the Sartell Sabres at Adamson Field. In five innings, Meyer allowed an infield single and one earned run with three strikeouts and three walks. He appeared undaunted by the weather.
"I didn't think (the weather) made too much of a difference," Meyer said, "but I thought I was hitting my spots pretty well. I thought my bender was on today so I thought I could get ahead early and that helped out."
Meyer was helped by clutch hitting from center fielder Chris Pederson, who finished 2-for-3 with two RBIs. Braydon Borg contributed an RBI single and Jaden Miller an RBI groundout.
Meyer threw 65 pitches, 38 strikes, including first-pitch strikes to 12 of 19 Sabres he faced. Considering the temperature, it was a prime day to be efficient. The contest lasted justed 92 minutes.
"It was moving along," Meyer said. "We weren't getting cold out in the outfield. It helps when you're in and out. It keeps your defense behind you fresh and not cold."
He complimented his fastball and curveball with a circle change.
"My off-speed was working well," Meyer said. "I think it helped my fastball with the off-speed."
Bryce Flanagan finished for Brainerd and earned a save, allowing one hit in two innings. He entered with no outs in the sixth and a runner at first. After retiring the first Sabre on a fly ball, Brandon Walz was out when hit by Keenan Lund's ground ball to second. After allowing a base hit, Flanagan retired the side on a groundout.
He set down the Sabres in order in the seventh and finished with 22 pitches, 15 strikes.
"Jake did a good job," Warriors coach Lowell Scearcy said. "He was changing speeds well. About the only way he was going to get hurt was if he started to walk guys.
"Bryce has been pretty good the couple times he's pitched. We felt pretty safe sticking Bryce out there. We had Hanson (Devine) warmed up if need be, if Bryce would have got into trouble."
Meyer singled to lead off the Warriors' first. Two outs later, Pederson cranked a double to score him. After Miller's infield single, Borg delivered his run-scoring single for a 2-0 edge.
Brainerd tacked on two runs in the fifth on Pederson's RBI single and Miller's run-scoring grounder.
The victory was Brainerd's second in conference play and overall.
"It was a good win," Scearcy said. "I'm happy for the kids because we've got a real good bunch of kids. Maybe this will get us back on the right track, maybe we can pull out another win or two this week. I know St. Cloud Tech is undefeated (Friday at Brainerd) and Fergus has a much better squad this year than they've had in the past."
Meyer won his first game in his second start of the season.
"It was a big win today," Meyer said. "Like coach said before the game 'our winning streak starts today.' One at a time and we'll get back in it."
Sartell 010 000 0-1 2 1
Brainerd 200 020 x-4 7 1
Sartell : Brandon Kramer, Riley Hartung (6) and Jared Freeman.
Brainerd: Jake Meyer, Bryce Flanagan (6) and Allen Jevning.
WP: Meyer (1-0).
2B: Brd-Chris Pederson
SB: Brd-Jevning, Jaden Miller, Pederson
RBIs: Brd-Pederson 2, Miller, Braydon Borg
LOB: Brd 7, S 3
MIKE BIALKA may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 218-855-5861. Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/bertsballpark .