Mar 31st, 2010 @ 10:26 am | Author: By Ryan Cunningham
Valley City--The first Viking home baseball game in nearly two years started at 4:00 p.m. Tuesday afternoon.

Two hours, 31 minutes later, the Vikings were 1-0 at home over a two-year span.

The Vikings scored in six consecutive innings to rout the University of Minnesota-Crookston Golden Eagles 12-4 at Charlie Brown Memorial Baseball field Tuesday afternoon. The game was the first home game since May, 2008, after last year's flooding canceled the season.

Matt Borgford (Jr., Pinawa, MB) doubles to right to set up a run for the Vikings later in the fifth (photo by Ryan Cunningham).

The win was just the second in 14 games for the Vikings, but it was a necessary win as the Vikings begin Dakota Athletic Conference (DAC) play this Friday.

The loss for the Golden Eagles was their 16th in a row. The Golden Eagle bullpen was just not equal to the task of handling Viking hitters.

Ryan Shaw (Fr., Cardale, MB, below) was equal to the task of taming Crookston, allowing just three hits ina two earned runs over six innings. While not overpowering, the performance was key from a pitcher on the tail end of the Viking starting rotation.

Justin Connell (Jr., Bismarck, ND) led the charge at the dish, finishing 4-5, driving in two runs. Tanner Bombenger (So., Fargo, ND) plated three with a pair of hits.

The Vikings used two key innings to separate from the Golden Eagles. Leading 4-3 entering the sixth, Valley City State exploded for three runs, starting a run of eight runs over their final three at-bats.

Connell, Derek Zitzow (Fr., Valley City, ND), and Bombenger started the rally. After a bunt single by Connell and a line drive off the pitcher's chest by Zitzow, Bombenger delivered a double down the right-field line, plating both runners.

Josh Evans (Fr., Hayfield, MN) then reached on a ground ball error that plated Connell. The rally took the Viking lead to 7-3.

Brenden Scherer singles in a run in the fifth (photo by Ryan Cunningham)

After a pair of runs on a two RBI double by Connell in the seventh, the Vikings would strike for three more in the eighth. Preston Jensen (Fr., Valley City, ND) would deliver a single, plating two runs. Michael Danielson (Fr., New London, MN) followed with a one-hop double off the center-field fence, plating another, giving the Vikings a 12-3 lead.

Crookston would manage a run in the ninth for the final scoring.