Becker brothers power Martins by Lakefield, 16-3
NORTHROP — Siblings Levi Becker and Luke Becker transformed into the Bash Brothers during Sunday’s amateur baseball game.
The Becker brothers combined for eight hits — including six for extra bases — to complement 10 RBIs and six runs scored to power the Fairmont Martins to a 16-3, seven-inning rout over the Lakefield Horned Frogs in Northrop.
Hitting out of the cleanup spot in the batting order, Levi Becker went 5-for-5 with a pair of home runs and one double en route to a game-best six RBIs. The Martins’ left fielder also scored two runs
“I’ve never driven in six runs in one game before,” said Levi Becker, who cranked a two-run shot in Fairmont’s five-run second at-bat before belting another two-run blast during the Martins’ six-run third inning to highlight his career-best offensive outing. “The last time I hit two home runs in a game was during 14U baseball off of Spence (Martins’ teammate Spencer Chirpich) and Jay Ruen in Redwood Falls.
“That’s when Fairmont had two teams playing each other, and I actually hit Luke when I was pitching against him.”
On Sunday, Luke Becker joined his brother in delivering the hits in place of getting hit by deliveries. He went 3-for-4 with a solo homer in the seventh inning to go with a pair of doubles and a walk. Luke Becker produced four RBIs and scored a game-best four runs — one more than the entire Horned Frogs’ team.
Ironically, the Becker brothers’ pre-Fourth of July fireworks nearly overshadowed solid starting pitching performances from left-hander Paxton Gravlin and reliever Blake Crawmer.
Gravlin allowed two of his three runs during the bottom of the first inning before settling into a solid pitching rhythm during the second frame. Gravlin gave up six hits, struck out four and issued five walks in five frames on the hill to earn the victory.
“You’re worrying too much about trying to be perfect out there (on the mound),” Martins coach Dave Hurn said to Gravlin, whom he lifted in the sixth inning. “You threw a nice game that allowed us to came away with a win and that’s all we’re asking for.”
Crawmer, who pitched for North Union during his high school playing days, faced the minimum six batters in closing out two perfect innings of relief for Fairmont. Crawmer struck out one and did not issue a walk or allow a hit or a run.
Lakefield’s option to be the home team backfired as Fairmont opened with two runs in the top of the first before reeling off five in the second and six more in the third to build a 13-2 margin.
Derek Shoen and Levi Becker each produced RBI singles to highlight the Martins’ initial at-bat before Luke Becker drilled an RBI double and Levi Becker smacked a two-run HR in the second. Luke Becker then unleashed a two-run double, Ethan Hurn contributed a sacrifice fly and Levi Becker followed with a towering two-run round-tripper in the third.
Ahead 13-3, Luke Becker provided an insurance run for the Martins in the top of the seventh inning by drilling a solo HR. Hurn, Shoen, Levi Becker and Chirpich reeled off consecutive singles, with Levi Becker and Chirpich collecting one RBI apiece to cap Fairmont’s 14-hit performance.
Shoen and Chirpich each went 2-for-5 on the game, while Carter Bell came off the bench to chip in a pinch-hit single in the sixth.
Ryan Christopher singled, Nolan Luhmann walked and Bryce Christopher singled to load the bases for Lakefield during the bottom of the first. Ryan Christopher crossed the plate on a walk to Dustin Pronk before Luhmann scored when Dalton Henning hit into a 6-4-3 double play.
Bryce Christopher walked, took second on Dustin Pronk’s single, wheeled to third on Henning’s infield hit and scored the Horned Frogs’ solo fifth-inning run on Phil Pronk’s RBI single.
Lakefield starting pitcher Andrew Hesebeck allowed 11 runs on four hits in 2-plus innings of work to take the loss. He walked five, hit two batters and did not record a strikeout.
Fairmont (9-2) plays host to Heron Lake at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday night in Truman.
FM 256 000 3 — 16 14 0
LK 200 010 0 — 3 6 2
Paxton Gravlin (WP), Blake Crawmer (6) and Ethan Hurn. Andrew Hesebeck (LP), Dustin Pronk (3), Dalton Henning (7) and Nate Pohlman.
LOB–Fairmont 5, Lakefield 7. 2B–Luke Becker (FMT) 2, Levi Becker (FMT). HR–Levi Becker (FMT) 2, Luke Becker (FMT). SF–Hurn (FMT).