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RedHawks edge Rockland in extra innings

FARGO – Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks shortstop Zach Penprase tried to channel his inner Rickey Henderson on Tuesday night at Newman Outdoor Field.

It was all about the legwear.

Wearing high socks and black stirrups, Penprase belted a solo home run and capped his evening by scoring the winning run in extra innings. His performance helped fuel the RedHawks to a 6-5 victory in 11 innings against the Rockland Boulders in independent baseball.

“I just always wanted to be like Rickey Henderson and all those guys back in the ’80s,” Penprase said, referring to the Baseball Hall of Famer considered to be one of the best lead-off hitters of all-time.

The RedHawks (19-12) snapped their two-game losing streak. F-M first baseman C.J. Retherford drove in Penprase from third base with a single to left field, giving the RedHawks their fifth walk-off victory this season. Retherford has had a hand in four of those walk-off wins.

“He’s a clutch guy,” RedHawks manager Doug Simunic said of Retherford. “He’s batting in the middle of the lineup for a reason. He was looking for an off-speed pitch and got it and he drilled it.”

Penprase finished his night with three hits; a home run to lead off the third inning, a double in the fifth inning and a single to lead off the 11th inning. Penprase scored runs in each of those innings.

“He’s a battler,” Simunic said of Penprase. “He plays hard. He wants to win. I can tell by looking at him in the dugout.”

Tuesday was the first time Penprase sported the high socks with stirrups look this season. He said RedHawks second baseman Brandon Newton got the stirrups for him. The stirrups are something Penprase plans to wear from here on out.

“I have never had anything like this so it’s pretty cool,” Penprase said with a smile. “I like them.”

After Penprase started the game-winning rally with a single, he stole second base. Rockland manager Jamie Keefe thought Penprase was tagged out at second, and stormed out of the dugout to argue the call. Keefe was ejected from the game, and then pulled second base out of the ground and hurled the base into the outfield.

Penprase thought he was safe.

“I think he definitely did not tag me,” Penprase said. “The umpire was right there and he made the right call.”

Penprase advanced to third base with two outs, advancing on a Sawyer Carroll ground out. That set the stage for Retherford, who sharply singled into left field to plate the winning run.

“C.J. in any situation … he wants to do the job,” Penprase said. “If the pitcher is throwing it over the plate, C.J. is swinging.”

NOTES: Right-hander Taylor Stanton (0-3, 3.71 ERA) is slated to start today for the RedHawks against Rockland. … Rockland right-handed closer Alex Kreis is from Grand Forks, N.D., and a former University of Jamestown standout. Kreis was on the mound Tuesday when Retherford delivered his game-winning single.


                 ab   r   h   bi                    ab    r  h   bi

Nandn 2b   5  0   1    1  Pnprs ss      6   3  3    1

Djss cf       5  0   0    0  Brqun 3b      4   0  1    0

Stvll rf        5  1   1    0  Crrll lf          5   1  2    0

Edmsn 1b  5  0   0    0  Rthfrd 1b     6   1  2    2

Nystr dh     5  2   3    0  Jcksn cf       5   1  1    1

Mlney lf      4  0   1    1  Prmre c       4   0  2    0

O’Hare 3b  2  1   1    0  Albrts dh      4   0  1    2

Crdllo 3b    2  0   0    0  Newton 2b   3   0  0    0

Nidiffr c      4  1   1    1  Kaskddn rf   5   0  1    0

Totals      41  5   9    4  Totals       42   6 13    6

R                        030   010         010 00–5  9   1

FM                     001   040         000 01–6 13   3

2B–Penprase (10). HR–Penprase (3). SB–Nyisztor (1), Penprase (7). HP–Alberts (3). LOB–Rockland 7, RedHawks 11. E–Nidiffer (1), Bourquin 2 (6), Retherford (3). DP–Rockland 3, RedHawks 2.


                           IP      H      R    ER   BB    SO

Law                     5       9       5        5       4       3

Martinez          1Z\c       1       0        0       0       1

Gilblair              X\c       0       0        0       0       0

Mangum             2       1       0        0       1       1

Kreis, L            1X\c       2       1        1       1       3


                           IP      H      R    ER   BB    SO

Bowlin                 6       6       4        1       3       4

Harris              3Z\c       2       1        1       0       1

Fuqua, W        1X\c       1       0        0       0       1

Umpires–Home: Silverman. First: Vincent. Third: Ghani. Time–3:10. A–3,998.

Eric Peterson
Peterson covers college athletics for The Forum, including Concordia College and Minnesota State Moorhead. He also covers the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks independent baseball team and helps out with North Dakota State football coverage. Peterson has been working at the newspaper since 1996.

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