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Kasel’s home runs paves the way for Bulldog baseball sweep of Sioux City West

The Le Mars Community baseball team finished their regular season sweep of Sioux City West with a pair of wins at home on Thursday night. The Bulldogs won the first game 10-0 in six innings and the second game by a score of 11-5.

The Bulldog offense was a stingy out all night against Wolverine pitching. Le Mars struck out just five times at the plate in the two victories. They carried some momentum from their 16-4 win over North on Tuesday, and head coach Trent Eckstaine says putting pressure on a defense to make a play makes things very challenging for opponents.

Le Mars pitching has been a bit of a roller coaster ride this season, but it was much steadier in the win over West. Specifically in game one, Carter Baumgartner was lights out allowing just three hits while striking out six to shut out the Wolverines. Coach Eckstaine says his efficiency and control has led to a confident stretch.

At the plate, the Bulldogs utilized a little more power than they are used to. Coming into the contests, Le Mars had hit just two home runs all season as a team. They hit three total in the two wins against West getting one in each game from Teagen Kasel. They were Kasel’s second and third career home runs after homering once as a freshman. Kasel says he was just simply trying to get on base with a hit rather than get it over the fence.

Kasel got out of the gates red hot this season but has slumped back down to earth a little over the last couple of weeks. He says he has been trying to go back to what worked early this season which is making sure to utilize all parts of the field.

Kasel’s second home run followed a mammoth shot from Ayden Hoag as part of a nine-run fifth inning in game two that gave the Bulldogs their first and only lead of the game. Coach Eckstaine says both of those guys have been a major reason why Le Mars has had success this season.

While two guys stole the show offensively, everyone had a hand, big or small, in getting the Bulldogs a pair of conference wins. Kasel says that is important as Le Mars heads toward the back half of their schedule and toward tournament time.

The Bulldogs will have a rare non-conference Monday game when they square off with MOC-Floyd Valley in Orange City. Coach Eckstaine knows it could be a postseason preview game, and he is hoping to have the guys tested in a big way.

The Bulldogs improved to 10-9 overall this season, and they are now 10-8 in the MRAC.