The Mason City baseball team jumped out to a 7-4 mark to start the season largely by defeating the teams that, on paper, it should have beaten while falling to stronger teams.
The Mohawks were in need of a statement, and that is just what they got on Wednesday with a doubleheader sweep of fourth-rated (4A) Waukee.
Harrison Nagel shut down a potent Warrior offense for most of the opener as he help Waukee scoreless until the seventh inning in an 8-1 Mason City romp in game one.
The Mohawks followed with a dramatic 6-5 win in the nightcap to improve to 9-4.
“We play against the best every night,” Mason City coach Troy Rood said. “I thought we competed really well at Southeast Polk on Monday, and that gave the kids some confidence.”
Nagel allowed just six hits while throwing a complete game in the opener, and the senior pitcher got plenty of offensive support, particularly from Avery Mellman.
Mellman led off the game with a double and scored the opening run in the first, and then followed with a solo home run to center field in the third.
Carter Thomas, a freshman, also had three hits while adding some solid defense in center field.
The second game was a back-and-forth affair but was tied at five entering the bottom of the seventh.
With the bases loaded and two out, Thomas laced a single to left to score Mellman from third for the Mohawk sweep.
Derek Dalen threw a complete game to pick up the win for Mason City.
Alex Golf, a sophomore, drove in three while Ben Pederson had a key two-run single.
A big key for the Mohawks all night was the speed and aggressiveness on the base paths as Waukee committed several errors while trying to keep Mohawk runners in check.
“We have really re-emphasized the running game this year,” Rood said. “We need to keep putting pressure on the defense.”
Mason City returns to action on Friday when it will face Pleasant Valley.
Clear Lake 10, St. Edmond 0: Clear Lake extended its winning streak to five games with a 10-0 victory against St. Edmond on Wednesday. The winning streak comes after a dismal stretch in which the Lions lost five consecutive contests.
Clear Lake scored three runs in the first and fifth innings Wednesday, and it also scored runs in the second, third and sixth innings.
The Lions (6-5) face Cherokee Washington on Thursday.
Reach Sports Reporter Luke A. Garza at 641-421-0540 or follow him on Twitter @LukeAGarza
Algona 16, Hampton-Dumont 6: Algona’s baseball team collected 15 huts during a run-rule victory against Hampton-Dumont on Wednesday. Algona scored 10 runs in the first three innings and six more in the next two. Matt Grein had three hits and a pair of RBIs. Kyle Simpson had four RBIs. Noah Carlson and Bryce Witham each drove in three runs.
Algona (4-7) hosts Spencer on Thursday.
Hampton-Dumont (3-8) hosts Central Springs on Thursday.
Osage 12, Central Springs 4: Osage’s most recent victory – an eight-run wallop of Central Springs – marks five in a row for the Green Devils.
Four players notched multiple hits, including Hayden Meek, who went 3-for-4 with an RBI. Collin Muller led all players with three RBIs.
Central Springs scored all four of its runs in the first inning.
Osage (8-2) faces Waukon on Thursday, while Central Springs plays Hampton-Dumont.
Rockford 4, Garner-Hayfield-Ventura 3: The Warriors scored a run in the bottom of the fourth, and it ended up being the last score of the game, propelling Rockford to victory Wednesday. They also scored three in the second.
The loss marks Garner-Hayfield-Ventura’s eighth consecutive. Landon Dalbeck had three hits in the loss. Sam Wood added a pair of base hits, as well.
Rockford (8-5) hosts Forest City on Friday. The Cardinals (8-2) face Newman Catholic on Thursday.
North Butler 13, North Iowa 5: North Butler trailed 5-2 heading into the sixth inning, but that changed when the Bearcats posted 11 runs in the frame against the Bison.
Kane Allison and Shawn Weitzenkamp each had three hits and two RBIs. Two of Kane’s hits were doubles. Brandon Reiher pitched a complete game with only one earned run allowed, striking out eight.
North Butler (7-4) faces North Union on Friday. North Iowa (4-9) hosts Central Springs on Friday.
West Fork 3, Bishop Garrigan 1: The Warhawks had lost two straight games heading into Wednesday’s game against Bishop Garrigan, but they got back on track with a 12-inning victory, scoring two runs in the top of the 12th to claim victory. The two teams entered extra innings scoreless, but both teams scored a run in the 10th.
Lukas Wogen pitched eight innings and allowed four hits and struck out 12. Mitchell Halloran earned the win, pitching the remainder of the game and striking out six while allowing only three hits.
West Fork (10-3) faces AGWSR on Thursday. Bishop Garrigan (6-10) plays Pocahontas Area.
Northwood-Kensett 11, West Hancock 1: Caden Schrafe and Isaac Renteria each had three hits during Wednesday’s 10-run victory against West Hancock. The Vikings scored eight runs in the first inning. Trey Waldemar earned the win on the mound, pitching five innings and allowing only one earned run, which came in the first inning. He struck out seven.
The loss marked West Hancock’s third in a row.
Northwood-Kensett (6-7) faces Eagle Grove on Monday. West Hancock (3-8) has a road clash with Newman Catholic on Friday.
Forest City 14, Nashua-Plainfield 7: Forest City scored nine runs in the fourth to gain a significant lead over Nashua-Plainfield on Wednesday. The Huskies scored four runs in the fifth and another in the sixth.
The Indians (8-5) host Waverly-Shell Rock on Thursday.
Baxter 5, Riceville 4
Riceville’s baseball team dropped to 4-6 with a one-run loss against Baxter on Wednesday.
The Wildcats have a road contest against Janesville on Friday.
Charles City 2, Waverly-Shell Rock 1: The Comets trailed most of Wednesday’s game against Waverly-Shell Rock, but a run in the sixth and seventh innings propelled them to victory.
Charles City (7-8) faces Waukon on Friday.
Saint Ansgar 11, Belmond-Klemme 0: Mark Williams was masterful against Belmond-Klemme on Wednesday, pitching five innings of scoreless baseball, allowing only three hits and striking out four. He also had a hit, a run, an RBI and a stolen base.
Carter Salz and Adam Williams each knocked in two runs during the victory.
The Broncos were held to three hits.
The Saints (12-4) face Osage on Friday, when Belmond-Klemme (2-9) will host Nashua-Plainfield.
Waukee 13, Mason City 0 (Game 1) / Waukee 13, Mason City 0 (Game 2): The Mohawks were limited to two hits in their Game 1 loss to Waukee on Wednesday. Anna Lensing and Shaye Theobald each hit singles.
Mason City had four hits in Game 2, with Sami Miller, Brianna Notermann, Sam Norcross and Lainna Duncan each recording one.
Mason City (7-9) hosts a tournament on Saturday.
Algona 12, Hampton-Dumont 6: Algona’s softball team won a battle of Bulldogs on Wednesday, scoring 11 runs in the first four innings, including five in the third.
Hampton-Dumont (6-6) hosts Central Springs on Thursday. Algona (8-6) hosts Garner-Hayfield-Ventura.
Central Springs 10, Osage 0: The Panthers claimed their 10th consecutive victory Wednesday, notching a double-digit shutout against Osage.
Abigayle Angell had three hits, two of which were home runs. She had five RBIs. Hannah Ausenhus, who pitched a complete-game shutout, also had a home run and four RBIs.
Katelyn Halbach and Kate Mostek each had two hits for the Green Devils.
Osage (9-10) faces Waukon on the road Thursday. Central Springs (15-4) faces Hampton-Dumont on Thursday.
Saint Ansgar 12, Belmond-Klemme 5: Saint Ansgar’s softball team won its eighth consecutive game Wednesday, scoring 12 runs against Belmond-Klemme.
Hali Anderson, Jadyn Anderson and Sam Hemann each had three hits. Hannah Patterson had a team-leading three RBIs. Lily Walk pitched a complete game with six strikeouts.
The loss marked Belmond-Klemme’s fourth in a row.
The Saints (12-4) face Iowa Falls-Alden on Thursday. The Broncos host Aplington-Parkersburg on Thursday.
Newman Catholic 14, Lake Mills 0: The Knights needed only three innings to defeat Lake Mills on Wednesday. Newman Catholic scored nine runs in the first and five more in the second to gain a hefty lead.
Lily Castle and Paige Leininger each had two hits. Leininger had six RBIs.
She also earned the victory in the circle after three innings of scoreless play. She struck out two.
The Bulldogs dropped their 12th straight game with the loss.
Newman Catholic (6-9) hosts West Hancock on Friday. Lake Mills (1-15) faces Garner-Hayfield-Ventura on Friday.
Rockford 7, Garner-Hayfield-Ventura 6: Rockford scored a run in the bottom of the seventh, capturing a walk-off victory against the Cardinals on Wednesday. The Warriors had 14 hits, four of which went for extra bases. Emma Ramon and Jenna Paulus each went 3-for-4.
Jayden Hughes and Maddie Graham each had a pair of hits for the Cardinals.
Rockford (7-6) hosts Forest City on Friday. Garner-Hayfield-Ventura (4-10) faces Algona on Thursday.
North Butler 8, North Iowa 0: North Butler used a consistent scoring effort Wednesday to defeat North Iowa, scoring runs in five innings. Alex Mathers pitched seven innings and allowed only one hit. She struck out four. Three Bearcats players had two hits.
The Bearcats (12-4) face North Union on Friday. North Iowa (4-9) faces North Union on Monday.
Bishop Garrigan 12, West Fork 2: Bishop Garrigan’s softball team continued its hot start with a blowout victory against West Fork on Wednesday, scoring at least 11 runs for the third consecutive game.
Amanda Miller earned the victory in the circle after pitching five scoreless innings. Six different players had at least one hit. Bailey Mesiter had three RBIs.
The Warhawks scored one run in the fourth and one in the fifth.
West Fork (8-3) faces Northwood-Kensett on Friday. Bishop Garrigan (13-3) faces Estherville Lincoln Central on Thursday.
Northwood-Kensett 10, West Hancock 0: Eight Northwood-Kensett players earned a hit against West Hancock on Wednesday. The Vikings scored four runs in the six in the fifth.
Laura Hopperstad had three hits and two RBIs. Molly Hunchis had two hits and two RBIs.
Kayla Senne pitched five innings and didn’t allow a run. She struck out nine and allowed two hits.
The loss marked the Eagles’ ninth in a row.
The Vikings (7-6) host West Fork on Friday. West Hancock (1-12) face Newman Catholic on Friday.
Baxter 11, Riceville 9: Riceville’s softball team lost its third game in a row, suffering a narrow loss to Baxter on Wednesday. Callee Fair and Abby Retterath each had three hits in the loss. Fair had three RBIs.
The Wildcats (7-7) face Janesville on Friday.
Forest City 12, Nashua-Plainfield 2: Forest City claimed a 10-run victory Wednesday against Nashua-Plainfield on Wednesday.
Kelsey Koch went 3-for-3 with four RBIs and two walks. Keevan Jones had two hits and three runs. Kennedy Klein pitched six innings and struck out five.
Forest City (5-10) hosts Humboldt on Thursday.