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Rams close in on state baseball bid

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Posted: Thursday, May 24, 2012 12:10 am

FAIRBANKS — The Monroe Catholic Rams are one win away from clinching a berth to the state high school baseball tournament in their first year of varsity competition.

Monroe Catholic rolled to a 12-1 win against the Eielson Ravens Wednesday evening at Growden Memorial Park to improve to 6-3 on the season.

The Rams are in second place, two games behind Mid Alaska Conference champion Lathrop Malemutes (8-1), and one game ahead of the North Pole Patriots (5-4) heading into the final game of the regular season.

If Monroe Catholic beats Delta Junction Saturday, it will clinch second place and earn the league’s second berth to state.

If the Rams lose and North Pole wins its game against Eielson, there would be a tie for second place and the Patriots would win the tie-breaker as they beat Monroe twice this season.

Tyler Wells tossed a one-hitter, while Jason Pace and Scooter Bynum came through with big hits as Monroe Catholic rolled past Eielson.

The Rams scored eight runs in the fourth inning to put the game away and went on to win in the fifth on the 10-run rule.

Pace had a single and a double and four runs batted in. His bases-loaded double in the fourth cleared the bases and put the Rams in position to control their own destiny.

Bynum had two hits and three runs batted in.

Wells pitched a complete game and recorded six strikeouts.

Patriots sweep

The North Pole Patriots rolled to an 8-1 win over visiting Delta Junction in a Mid Alaska Conference game and edged the Huskies 4-3 later Wednesday night in the nonconference finale at Wright Field at Newby Park.

Adam Norton and Will Perkins each hit 2 for 3 in the opener for North Pole, and Perkins also drove in four runs.

Tyson Herold pitched a one-hitter and struck out five Huskies for the first four innings and reliever Nick Hamsley scattered two hits and struck out three.

Delta Junction scored its lone run in the top of the second inning.

In the second game, Herold, in his only at-bat, ripped a walk-off triple in the bottom of the sixth inning to score Tyler Hill from first base for the game-winning run.

North Pole led 3-1 in the first inning and Delta Junction chipped away at the lead with runs in the third and fourth. The Patriots finished with six hits, getting their other contributions from Chad Freeman, Perkins, Hill, Hamsley and Norton.

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