FAIRMONT - Spencer Chirpich fired a one-hit complete-game gem, while Luke Becker delivered an RBI triple to power the Class AA, No. 8-ranked Fairmont Cardinals to a key 1-0 sectional baseball victory over the No. 4-ranked Luverne Cardinals on Friday at Herb Wolf Field.
Chirpich kept Luverne's potent batting order off of the scoreboard for his near-perfect seven-inning mound stint to earn the complete-game victory.
Fairmont's junior ace right-hander recorded seven strikeouts and issued two walks. He allowed only Logan Norman's single during the top of the fifth inning.
"It was good to see Spencer back on the top of his game today," said Fairmont mentor Todd Sukalski.
Becker delivered the eventual game-winning extra-base hit during the home half of the fifth inning. Jack Waletich drew a two-out walk, moved to second base on a wild pitch and scored the game's only run on Becker's RBI triple.
Tyler Tennyson, Ben Abel and Parker Monsen each collected hits for Fairmont.
Luverne starting pitcher Kendall Meyer allowed one run on four hits, struck out eight and walked four in six innings of work to receive the loss.
Fairmont (8-1, 3-1 South Central) faces host Windom at 10 a.m. and Adrian at 12:30 p.m. today at the Windom Invitational.
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Kendall Meyer (LP) and Logan Norman. Spencer Chirpich (WP) and Ben Abel.
Luverne edged Fairmont, 5-3, during junior varsity action Friday in Fairmont.
Eli Green produced two hits and one RBI for Fairmont, while Bailey Koppen chipped in an RBI double. Nate Johnson and Kale Fritz added one hit apiece.
Green allowed five runs - two earned - on five hits, struck out three and walked three in seven innings of work for Fairmont (4-4).
Martin County West 11, Cleveland 1 - Tony Payne gave up one run on three hits over five innings to pitch the Mavericks to a 11-1 win over the Clippers during Valley Conference action on Friday in Welcome.
Payne helped his own cause, driving in two RBIs on two hits. On the mound, he struck out three while allowing one walk in the win.
Toby Haugen led the Maverick hitting attack, going 5-for-5, including a double, and driving in five RBIs.
Jake Faber helped the Mavericks with three hits in four at-bats, including a double, and drove in two RBIs.
Martin County West (4-3, 2-2 Valley) plays Martin Luther/ Granada-HuntleyEast Chain/Truman at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday in Truman.
St. James 11, Blue Earth Area 1 - Ryan Menssen went 3-for-5 from the plate, scoring twice, while Walker Froehling pitched five scoreless innings as the Saints defeated the Bucs, 11-1, in South Central Conference action on Friday in Blue Earth.
Froehling allowed just three hits, striking out three and didn't give up a walk in the win, while helping his own cause and going 2-for-4 at the plate.
The Saints got help from John Olson and Jonathon Peterson, each of had two hits in the win.
Seth Anderson, David Franta, Alex Stewart, Quinn Huisman and Alec Huber each had hits for the Bucs in the game.
Huber pitched five innings for Blue Earth Area, allowing nine runs - four earned - with one strikeout and three walks to take the loss.
Blue Earth Area (3-4, 0-3 SCC) plays in the Windom Tournament at 3 p.m. today.
Mountain Lake Area 3, Martin Luther/Granada-Huntley-East Chain/Truman 2 - The Wolverines scored twice in the bottom of the fifth inning, and shut down the Knights to post a 3-2 win in non-conference baseball action on Friday in Mountain Lake.
Nathan Adrian pitched four innings for MLA, allowing two runs on six hits, striking out four and giving up one walk to earn the win.
Carter Kirk and Tyler Duerksen each had a hit and scored a run for the Wolverines.
Trent Stensland pitched two innings for the Knights, allowing one run - unearned - on one hit, striking out three and walking one to take the loss.
Colton Greiner pitched three innings of relief, allowing two unearned runs on two hits and striking out two batters for Martin Luther/ Granada-Huntley-East Chain/Truman.
Sam Geistfeld pitched one inning, allowing no runs or hits and striking out two for the Knights.
Ethan Hurn collected three hits for the Knights, while Stensland had a triple and scored a run. Carson Hurn added a double and a run, while Tristan Maday collected an RBI.
Martin Luther/Granada-Huntley-East Chain/Truman (1-6, 1-1 Valley) travels to play Lyle Pacelli at 4:30 p.m. on Monday at Austin Marcussen in Austin.
Mankato Loyola 3, Martin County West 2 - The host Crusaders manufactured two runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to pull out a 3-2 Valley Conference win over the visiting Mavericks in softball action on Friday in Mankato.
The Crusaders used a leadoff walk, a hit, sacrifice fly and speed on the bases to get past the Mavericks.
Katie Homan pitched the seven-inning complete game for Loyola, striking out seven while giving up one walk for the win.
Aunikah Bastian had a double and an RBI for the Crusaders, while McKenna Elert added a hit and one RBI.
The Mavericks' Rebecca Steen pitched seven innings, striking out five and giving up 10 walks to take the loss.
Steen, along with Kate Thiesse, Molly Klima and Ellie Kuehl each had a hit for the Mavericks.
Martin County West (6-2, 3-2 Valley) travels to play in the Windom Tournament at 9 a.m. today.