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Patriots, Post 2 split American Legion doubleheader

West Fargo’s Tony Nichols gets back to the base as Fargo Post 2’s Andrew Penney leaps to make the catch during a pickoff attempt on Wednesday. David Samson / The Forum

FARGO – A big third inning and the performance of Camran Bonnema led to an 8-5 West Fargo victory over Fargo Post 2 in the first game of an American Legion baseball doubleheader during military appreciation night on Wednesday.

Bonnema’s complete-game pitching performance and consistency at the plate made the difference for the Patriots at Jack Williams Stadium.

“(Camran) had real good at-bats at the plate for us,” West Fargo head coach Bill Ibach said. “Pitching, he has been solid all year. Fargo’s got some good sticks in their lineup, and he got through it.”

West Fargo left the third inning with a 7-1 lead after scoring six runs – three earned.

“Getting a big lead like that was huge,” Ibach said. “We knew they were going to score some runs, and to get a cushion there was big. We left some guys on, and that has been our Achilles’ heel (this season).”

Bonnema, who batted

3-for-4, sent two of those earned runs home in the third, when he drove the ball to left field with the bases loaded on a 2-2 count.

“I went out there and looked for a pitch to hit, and I ended up putting the bat on the ball,” Bonnema said. “I just hoped I’d find a hole.”

West Fargo’s bats produced 13 hits, including 11 singles.

“I think the key was just getting hits at the right time,” Ibach said.

Post 2 hung around, stringing a couple hits together, but came up short.

Andrew Penney sustained Fargo’s offense by hitting 3-for-4 with a double and a home run he pulled over the right-field fence.

Fargo Post 2 took the second game from West Fargo, winning 6-2.

That game remained fairly even, with each team earning quick three-up, three-down innings until Seth Amundson came to the plate in the fourth inning for Fargo.

Amundson laced a double to right field to score Gunnar Linstaedt, who scampered in from first base for the tying run.

After Amundson stole third, Andrew Lein ripped a single to left field to score Amundson for the go-ahead run and to put Fargo up for good.

“It took us until the fourth inning to really get honed in,” Fargo Post 2 head coach Luke Rustad said. “That’s when we got our first hit. But once we did, everybody started breaking through, and we were able to put hits on top of hits.”

All of Fargo’s eight hits came between the fourth and sixth innings.

Post 2 didn’t let West Fargo score again after the second inning. Carter Thompson made a diving catch for Fargo to end the game.

“We made all the routine plays that we are supposed to make,” Rustad said. “Then we ended with a non-routine play with Carter diving to end the game. I’m proud of the guys. (Defense) was the big difference in the second game.”

WF 016 010 0–8 13 1

F 010 201 1–5 8 2

Bonnema and Paper. Voss, Anderson (5) and Penney. W–Bonnema. L–Voss. HR–F, Penney.

WF 020 000 0–2 6 2

F 100 230 x–6 8 0

Strahm and Wohl. Salentine and Penney. W–Salentine. L–Strahm.