Success continued to follow the Fort Dodge baseball team here Monday night.
Winning for the 15th time in their past 16 games, the fourth-ranked (Class 4A) Dodgers (21-4 overall, 12-2 in the league) took both ends of a CIML Iowa Conference doubleheader from Mason City at Ed McNeil Field.
After prevailing by a 10-6 count in the opener, FDSH breezed to a 10-0 six-inning rout in the nightcap.
"The first game was kind of hairy, but credit our guys for battling and competing hard, which was good to see," said Fort Dodge head coach Matt Elsbecker, whose squad swept the season series from the defending state runner-up Mohawks. "There's no doubt about it that we still have room to grow as a team, but that's what these last two or three weeks are about. 'How much better can the Dodgers be by July 13? (when the 4A substate tournament begins). That's when (winning) really matters."
FDSH banged out 23 hits in the two contests and plated at least one run in nine of the 12 innings they batted.
Seniors Will Gormally and Sam Edwards and junior Tommy Halligan each delivered a pair of hits for the Dodgers in game one. Edwards also drove in three, while Gormally, sophomore JC Hatcher and freshman Austin Halligan all scored twice.
FORT DODGE 10, MASON CITY 6
Mason City 210 300 0-6 9 2
Fort Dodge 210 331 x-10 11 3
Collin Platts (3 + IP, 7 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 0 K), Ryan Bice (1/3 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 0 K), Connor DeRoy (L, 1-4; 2/3 + IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 0 K), Jack Esser (2 IP, 1 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 1 K) and Brock Thompson; Tyler Vaughn (W, 6-0; 7 IP, 9 H, 6 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K) and Devon Harms;
2B-FD: Will Gormally (2), Vaughn, Tommy Halligan. MH-MC: Esser (3), Ryan Erickson (2), Austin Voves (2); FD: Gormally (2), Sam Edwards (2), Halligan (2). SB-MC: Tyler Moorehead. CS-MC: Erickson; FD: Luke Vandermaten. LOB-MC: 6; FD: 7. DP-MC: 1; FD: 1.
FORT DODGE 10, MASON CITY 0 (6 Inn.)
Mason City 000 000-0 2 2
Fort Dodge 301 105-10 12 2
Taylor King (L, 1-5; 5 1/3 IP, 10 H, 8 R, 7 ER, 2 BB, 1 K), Thompson (0 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 0 K) and Mike Tyler; Gormally (W, 3-2; 7 IP, 0 R, 0 ER, 4 BB, 5 K) and Harms.
2B-FD: Isaac Lehman (2), Edwards, Halligan. HR-FD: Gormally. MH-FD: Lehman (3), Gormally (2), Vandermaten (2), Halligan (2). SB-FD: Halligan. CS-MC: Carter DeVary. LOB-MC: 8; FD: 5.
"I thought Sam put a couple more good swings on (the ball) and played well defensively, too," Elsbecker said.
Trailing by three runs in the bottom of the fourth, the Dodgers gained control with six tallies over the next two frames. Edwards (two singles), Tommy Halligan (double) and senior Luke Vandermaten (sacrifice fly) all brought home runs during that pivotal stretch.
Going the distance in the win was junior Tyler Vaughn (6-0), who scattered nine hits, two earned runs, one walk and three strikeouts. Vaughn, who has allowed 11 earned runs in 36 2/3 innings on the season, retired the side in order in the third and sixth frames.
"Tyler will probably be the first one to admit he didn't have his best stuff (Monday), but he really showed how much of a competitor he is," said Elsbecker. "I thought he battled his tail off and gave us a chance (for a comeback victory)."
Jack Esser supplied a bright spot for Mason City with three hits, two RBI and a run scored.
In the finale, the Dodgers jumped out to an early 3-0 advantage and were never seriously threatened by the reigning league champion Mohawks (9-20, 3-11). Isaac Lehman, a senior left fielder and No. 5 batter in the order, ignited the FDSH offensive assault with three hits and five RBI, including a walkoff two-run double. Gormally, Vandermaten and Tommy Halligan all came through with two hits, while Tommy Halligan crossed the dish three times and Vandermaten scored twice. Gormally helped his own cause as well with his second long ball of the season in the sixth - a two-run blast to right field. Gormally (3-2) also fired a two-hitter in the complete game win, allowing just a pair of harmless singles in the top of the third. The southpaw walked four and fanned five. Gormally has now whiffed 42 in 39 innings of work this year.
Stepping out of CIML Iowa Conference play, the Dodgers travel to Boone (15-8) this evening. First pitch is set for 7:30 p.m.