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Raider baseball team wins 3 of 4 in Big Rivers play

Hudson junior Miles Lewis dives safely back to first base after singling in the first inning of the opening game of a doubleheader against Eau Claire Memorial last Friday at Grandview Park.

The Raider baseball team's 2013 hit parade continued as it exploded for 24 runs in a doubleheader sweep at Rice Lake but came to an abrupt halt Friday at home against Eau Claire Memorial as the Raiders were shut out for the first time in 71 games, 6-0.

Hudson got back on track in the nightcap however, handing the Old Abes their first shutout loss in 37 games with a 4-0 victory.

The Raiders' 3-1 week left them tied with Eau Claire North for first place in the Big Rivers Conference, both at 5-1. Hudson hosted Menomonie this past Tuesday, May 14, and will host River Falls for a doubleheader Friday, May 17, beginning at 4 p.m. They host East Ridge in a nonconference game Saturday, May 18, before visiting Eau Claire North for a doubleheader Tuesday, May 21.

Last Tuesday at Rice Lake, the Raiders hit double-digits in runs scored for the third and fourth straight games while sweeping the Warriors, 13-1 and 11-1.

Mile Lewis paced the offense in the opener with three hits, including a double, two runs scored and one RBI while Austin Evenson was 2-for-4 with two runs scored and three RBI.

Hunter Frey had a two-run double and Todd Mork doubled in a run while Blake Amborn had a two-run single and drove in another run on a fielder's choice.

Mike Hommes worked three scoreless innings of the five-inning game to earn the victory on the mound, allowing just one hit while striking out two. Sam Glade allowed one run on six hits with one strikeout over the final two innings.

Mork, Austin Evenson, Josh Evenson and Jake Giordana all drove in two runs in the nightcap and four Raider pitchers combined on a three-hitter in an 11-1 victory.

Stef Smith and Josh Evenson worked two innings each with Evenson getting credit for the victory. Chuck Peterson and Frey worked an inning apiece as the Raiders closed out the Warriors in six innings.

"Our pitchers did an excellent job today pounding the strike zone and eliminating free bases," Raider coach Ryan Huppert said. "When we do that and play nearly flawless defense like we did, we'll give ourselves a good chance at winning ball games."

Of the 143 pitches thrown by Raider pitchers in the two games, 103 were strikes. Hudson pitchers did not walk a batter and the Raiders allowed just two free bases -- one on a hit batter and one error.

Last Friday, in the first game of a doubleheader at Grandview Park, the Raiders managed just three hits in a 6-0 loss to Eau Claire Memorial. Miles Lewis singled and stole second in the first inning while Peterson had a pair of hits later in the game. Memorial scored five runs in the top of the third to break open a scoreless game.

Josh Evenson pitched six scoreless innings in the nightcap and Mork had three hits, including a two-run triple to highlight a four-run first innings, as the Raiders earned a split with a 4-0 victory.

Lewis had an RBI single in the first and Mork scored on a wild pitch to give Hudson an early 4-0 lead. Josh Evenson did the rest, allowing just four hits with four strikeouts and three walks and extending his scoreless innings streak to eight. Frey shut the door with a scoreless seventh inning of relief.

"Josh Evenson pitched really well for us the second game," Huppert said. "He attacked the strike zone, kept the Memorial hitters off balance and our defense made the routine plays behind him. It was a great outing on the mound for Josh."

Hommes and Austin Evenson contributed a pair of hits in the victory while Hommes also stole two bases.

"I am happy we came back right away offensively and responded with four runs in the top of the first to start game two," Huppert said. "We needed that to get us going some after game one. We had a couple more opportunities to score runs in the 4th and 7th inning that we need to capitalize on better to extend our lead. We'll keep working hard at it."

Bob Burrows

Bob Burrows has been sports editor at the River Falls Journal since 1996 and at the Hudson Star-Observer since 2009. Prior to joining the Journal, Burrows served as sports editor with Ledger Publications in Balsam Lake, Wis. A native of Bayonne, N.J. and a U.S. Navy veteran, Burrows attended Marquette University before completing his studies at UW-River Falls in 1992.

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