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Eric Peterson, Published May 30 2013

Laber bounces back as RedHawks top Canaries to earn doubleheader split

FARGO – This start couldn’t come fast enough for left-hander Jake Laber after his previous outing.

“You start thinking about your next start immediately after that bad one,” Laber said.

Thursday’s start was a good one for Laber, who pitched six scoreless innings. His effort sparked the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks to a 2-0 victory against the Sioux Falls Canaries in American Association baseball at Newman Outdoor Field.

Laber helped the RedHawks to victory in a seven-inning game, the first game of a doubleheader. The Canaries salvaged a split with a 9-8 victory in the second game. F-M’s rally from a six-run deficit fell just short in a game that ended at 11:43 p.m.

The RedHawks (5-9) earned three wins against Sioux Falls in the four-game series.

Laber quieted the Canaries in the first game. He limited Sioux Falls to two hits, one in the second inning and one in the fourth inning. A former Fargo North and North Dakota State standout, Laber retired the last eight batters he faced. He threw 78 pitches, including 50 strikes.

“It was just about coming out and throwing a lot of strikes,” Laber said.

Laber wasn’t nearly as sharp in his previous outing, which resulted in an 11-1 home loss against Laredo last Friday. He allowed six runs in the first inning and was knocked from the game in the third inning. Laber gave up eight runs (three earned) on seven hits in 2 2/3 innings.

“So I was more than ready to go today,” Laber said, wanting to atone for that performance.

Laber breezed through the first inning Thursday, retiring the Canaries in order. He was facing his first batter in the second inning when the game was halted due to rain. Laber returned to the mound after a 1-hour, 48-minute rain delay and was able to keep his rhythm.

“I’ve done it before, thankfully, so I kind of knew what I was in for,” Laber said of the long delay. “You can’t let your mind wander too far. If it gets over an hour you can kind of start thinking about other things.”

The RedHawks scratched across their only two runs of Game 1 in the sixth inning. Tim Alberts smacked an RBI double to left field to plate the first run. A Todd Jennings sacrifice fly gave F-M a 2-0 lead.

RedHawks closer Chase Johnson pitched a perfect seventh inning to earn the save and combine with Laber for the two-hit shutout.

The RedHawks start a three-game series at 7 p.m. today at rival Winnipeg. The Goldeyes are in first place in the North Division.

NOTES: Right-hander Taylor Stanton (1-1, 9.28 ERA) is scheduled to start today for the RedHawks against Winnipeg. … Laber has started 64 games for the RedHawks. That total is the fifth most in franchise history.

SIOUX FALLS REDHAWKS

ab r h bi ab r h bi

VnStrn cf 3 0 0 0 Pnprse ss 3 0 1 0

Trajano rf 3 0 1 0 Garcia dh 3 0 1 0

Ramirez lf 2 0 0 0 Jckson cf 1 1 0 0

Clark 1b 2 0 0 0 Alberts rf 3 1 1 1

Alonso dh 3 0 1 0 Brchld 1b 3 0 1 0

Pahuta 3b 3 0 0 0 Cesar 2b 3 0 0 0

Dmcus c 2 0 0 0 Brquin 3b 2 0 0 0

Taylor 2b 2 0 0 0 Jnnings c 2 0 1 1

Morals ss 2 0 0 0 Ssnoskie lf 3 0 2 0

Totals 22 0 2 0 Totals 23 2 7 2

SF 000 000 0 –0 2 0

FM 000 002 x –2 7 0

LOB–Sioux Falls 3, RedHawks 8. 2B–Alberts (5).

SIOUX FALLS

IP H R ER BB SO

Ruwe L 5Xc 7 2 2 3 4

Daly Zc 0 0 0 0 0

REDHAWKS

IP H R ER BB SO

Laber W 6 2 0 0 1 2

Johnson S 1 0 0 0 0 1

Umpires–Home: McLaughlin. First: Ghani. Third: Heine. Time–1:35.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Eric Peterson at (701) 241-5513.

Peterson’s blog can be found

at peterson.areavoices.com