Baseball diamond

The Hastings Raiders Baseball team (16-3) battled back from an early deficit but ultimately fell short to the Hill Murray Pioneers 6-9 on May 24.

Finding themselves down 1-4 after the first inning, the Raiders clawed back into the contest during the top of the fourth inning. The Raiders were able to score two more runs after taking advantage of some errant Hill Murray pitching.

Unfortunately for the Raiders, the Pioneers would tack on two more runs of their own during the inning to keep it a three-run game.

The fifth inning brought another glimpse of hope for the Raiders. Starting pitcher Aaron Vandehoef slapped a single to get the ball rolling. Jack Seleski came in as a pinch runner for Vandehoef and immediately became a threat to score after stealing second base.

2022 Metro East All Star and Bemidji State Baseball commit Jackson Schaffer then hit an RBI single to reward Seleski’s astute base running and cut the lead to two runs. Schaffer would be thrown out in a run-down soon after, but Hastings kept threatening.

Connor Stoffel smashed a double that nearly cleared the fences. Alex Hendrickson hit an RBI single to drive Stoffel in, and then Eddie Peine recorded an RBI double to tie the game 6-6.   

Peine took the mound for Hastings in the bottom of the fifth inning to try and keep things knotted up. However, he struggled with his control and quickly found himself in a bases-loaded jam.The Pioneers would score two runs in the fifth inning and one in the sixth inning, while Hastings was unable to generate any more the rest of the way.

The loss brings the Raiders to 16-3 overall and 13-3 in the Metro East division. They sit in second place behind the Mahtomedi Zephyrs, who are 15-4 overall and 15-1 in division play.

On deck for Hastings is their senior night game at home against Northfield (5-14) on May 24 at 7 p.m. Seniors Alex Arnold, Carson Handrich, Caleb Kimmes, Jackson Schaffer, Joe Schuster, Carter Schulte, Connor Stoffel, and Carson Thuet will be honored.

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