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Pioneers win 3, even record

Frankie Vogt squares his hips to drive the ball during a game against the Billings Angels last weekend. Vogt went 8-for-15 with a home run, four RBIs and eight runs scored in the four-game series. The Pioneers won 3-1 against the Angels and are now 3-3 overall.   Frankie Vogt squares his hips to drive the ball during a game against the Billings Angels last weekend. Vogt went 8-for-15 with a home run, four RBIs and eight runs scored in the four-game series. The Pioneers won 3-1 against the Angels and are now 3-3 overall. Tribune photo by John Wetzel.

The Powell Pioneers took three of four against the Billings Angels this weekend to improve to 3-3 on the season.

Pitching led the Pioneers to two road victories Saturday while offense ruled back in Powell as the Pioneers won Sunday’s first game but couldn’t complete the sweep.

In his first start of the season, Powell’s Matt Brown pitched five innings, gave up three runs and fanned four. Cory Heny and Frankie Vogt each drove in a pair of runs for the Pioneers on their way to a 6-4 series opening win.

Pioneers coach Jason Borders said Vogt has been dialed in at the plate so far.

“Everything he’s hit has just been hard. I haven’t seen him hit anything weak yet,” Borders said.

Vogt is batting .571 in 21 at bats to start the season.

Heny took his turn on the mound in Saturday’s 9-2 victory, pitching a complete-game four-hitter. He struck out four while allowing single runs in the second and fifth innings.

Borders said Heny’s performance really saved the Pioneers’ depleted pitching staff.

“He just came out and ate up innings and that’s what we needed out of him,” Borders said.

The Pioneer offense gave Heny more than enough support, scoring nine runs on eight hits. Powell drew 11 walks, including three each by Hayden Cragoe and Dillon Nix.

The offensive momentum carried over to Sunday’s early game, a 13-8 slugfest won by the Pioneers.

Vogt led the way with three hits, including the game’s only home run. Vogt drove in two and scored three runs. Brown had two RBIs on a pair of singles.

Bryce Wright gave up six earned runs in five and one third innings for the Pioneers. He struck out four and allowed only three hits but gave up six free passes. Grady Sanders pitched an inning of relief before Vogt came in to record the game’s final two outs.

The Angels finally got the upper hand in the weekend’s final game, beating Powell 11-5 in eight innings.

The Pioneers led 5-1 after three innings, but failed to score in the game’s next five frames.

With the score knotted at five, the Pioneers sent Gage Henderson to the mound to hold onto the tie in top of the eighth.

Borders said he didn’t want to pitch Henderson but was left with few options after his team played 28 innings in two days.

“(We were) pretty much out of arms,” Borders said.

Henderson hurt his shoulder sliding into home during Saturday’s early game but was able to play through it.

Henderson gave up six runs on five hits and the Pioneers were unable to muster any offense in the bottom of the inning.

Matt Sweet hit two singles, making him the only Pioneer with multiple hits. Cragoe added a double and one RBI and Wright drove in two on a single.

Heny flashed his prowess on the base paths, stealing five bases in Sunday’s games, giving him a total of six on the season.

“That’s his job,” Borders said. “To get on base and get us started.”

Heny has drawn nine walks this season and is second on the team with a .615 on-base percentage among players with more than 20 plate appearances.

The Pioneers will look to extract revenge against the Billings Halos in a doubleheader Saturday, though where is still to be determined. Weather will dictate if the game is in Powell or Billings. Powell suffered 7-4 and 12-7 losses to the Halos to open the season May 11.

The Pioneers will then play a doubleheader at Glendive Monday, and another against Miles City on Tuesday.

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