Connect with us


Dominant pitching: Norway baseball finds rhythm against Niagara



Norway junior Bryce Adams (2) rifles a pitch towards home plate at Mike Maule Field on Monday as the Knights beat Niagara. (Terry Raiche photo)

NORWAY — It took Niagara a few innings to get going on Monday as it faced off with the Norway varsity baseball teams at Mike Maule Field in Marion Park.

However, it was too late as the Knights found their footing early and rolled to an 11-3 victory over the Badgers.

“We jumped on Niagara right away,” Norway head coach Tony Adams said. “They’re a good team. They’re in the hunt for their conference championship and we know these guys. … We got off to a really good start. … The biggest improvement is our approach with two strikes.”

Niagara’s energy seemed to be off from the start of the game, according to head coach Brad Richtig.

“We came out flat to start and we didn’t pick it up when we needed to,” coach Richtig said. “We came out flat and we stayed flat the whole game.”

Niagara senior Mason Richtig (9) blasts a three-run homer over the left field fence at Mike Maule Field on Monday. (Terry Raiche photo)

For coach Richtig, the Badgers energy level seems to be different in nonconference matchups than in conference clashes.

“This is our second nonconference game of the year and it’s our second loss of the year,” coach Richtig said. “The boys have been up for the conference games and down for the nonconference games. This is baseball, you should be up for every game.”

Bryce Adams picked up the win on the mound for Norway. He struck out eight batters in five innings. “I feel really comfortable up there,” Adams said. “I trust my defense, so I don’t have a problem throwing it over the plate. … I can trust them to make any play.”

Owen Baij and Cole Baij also pitched an inning each, while striking out three batters apiece.

“Bryce – who hasn’t pitched a whole lot in high school – into the fifth, he’s got a no-hitter,” coach Adams said. “He gave up the one, which is fine, he gave us five.”

Niagara sent Christian Hedmark to the mound to start the game.

He pitched two innings and allowed four earned runs. As a staff, the Badgers only recorded two strikeouts on the mound.

Connor Bath drew a walk in the bottom of the first, seemingly starting things off on the right foot for Niagara. However, the inning quickly came to an end on a double play from Hayden Amundson.

“I wasn’t even expecting it,” Hayden Amundson said. “The ball was hit, no clue where it was. And all of the sudden, I look up and it’s coming for me. I was like, ‘Oh, goy.’

“It was awesome. I think we were really low energy before that.”

Coach Adams agreed.

“I thought Hayden Amundson set the tone with the double play,” coach Adams said.

The Knights used that energy to tack on two runs in the bottom of the first. They kept that momentum going into the bottom of the fourth when they pushed their lead to 8-0.

Down big, Niagara’s Blake Holmes reached first base on an error and Easton Holmes moved him to second with a single, sending Mason Richtig to the plate.

Richtig connected with a pitch and sent it over the left field fence for a three-run homer.

“Nice home run by my son Mason,” coach Richtig said. “It’s been a while.”

Norway added three runs to its total in the bottom of the sixth to lock up the 11-3 win.

Owen Baij led the Knights at the plate with a 3 for 4 outing. Landon Amundson, Cole Baij and Bryce Adams recorded two hits apiece. Bryce Adams recorded four RBIs.

Alex Ortman led Norway with two walks.

Mason Richtig led Niagara with three RBIs. He also recorded a stolen base.

Norway is back in action on Friday at Mike Maule Field against Ironwood while Niagara heads to Coleman, Wis. on Thursday.

“We’re going to find out real quick, aren’t we,” coach Richtig said. “We’re back in it Thursday at Coleman. We’ve got to pick it up or we’re in trouble.”

Today’s breaking news and more in your inbox

Continue Reading