American Legion

Giants and Eagles split 17U Legion doubleheader

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Photos by Ray Hamill/HumboldtSports.com

The Northern Humboldt Giants and Humboldt Eagles split a 17U American Legion baseball doubleheader in Cutten on Thursday afternoon.

The Giants, who came in having played two games last weekend, looked the more dangerous early on, comfortably taking the opener 13-1.

But the Eagles battled back to take an exciting nightcap 13-10.

“Clearly the kids didn’t have a spring,” Eagles head coach Jeff Mielke said afterwards. “There were definitely some growing pains and some mental errors that you usually don’t see at this time of the year, but we bounced back.”

The Eagles took advantage of some solid pitching and a productive game two from the top of the lineup, with Rogan Bode, Regan Nyberg and Cole Ayala all impressing at the plate.

Bode was particularly impressive in both games, finishing with a pair of hits in each and driving in his team’s only run in the opener.

“He really showed a lot,” Mielke said of Bode. “He really impressed me today.”

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So too did Ayala, who finished 3-for-5 with a triple and two RBIs in game two, while Nyberg scored three runs in the win, reaching base on a pair of hit-by-pitches and a walk, and making the Giants pay each time.

Brayden Youkey also had a big game at the plate, hitting a solo home run to break a 9-9 tie in the bottom of the sixth and give his team the late momentum.

Richard Reeves also impressed and was 2-for-4 with two runs scored, while Connor Johnson was 1-for-3.

Mielke used three pitchers in each game, with Vance Johnson posting the win in relief.

Starter Jeran Ford and reliever Gavin Brooks were each solid in their first appearance of the year.

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“My team impressed me with their mental fortitude and being able to bounce back,” Mielke said.

The Giants, who are now 3-1 on the summer, comfortably won game one, breaking open a tight game with seven runs in the top of the fourth.

Mason Nichols, who hit a grand slam in Saturday’s season opener against the Tehama Bulls, almost did it again, blasting a deep double with the bases loaded to score a pair of runs.

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