Dodgers rally, come up short at Ankeny

-Messenger photo by Britt Kudla Jace Ulrich of Fort Dodge connects for an RBI against Ankeny during Class 4A Substate Finals on Friday in Ankeny

ANKENY — The Fort Dodge baseball team showed the same heart and determination Blake Utley has learned to expect here Friday night.

But in the end, it wasn’t enough, as the Dodgers were ousted in a Class 4A substate contest by Ankeny, 6-5.

The Hawks (19-17 overall) now face Mason City on Monday with the winner of that contest advancing to a substate final vs. Des Moines Roosevelt in Runnells on Wednesday.

After falling in a 4-0 hole early, the Dodgers (16-24) got a run back in the third that was quickly answered by Ankeny. Down 6-1 in the top of the sixth, FDSH picked up three runs and had another big chance to get closer in the seventh before.

Drew Callon worked a walk against Chris Spear with one out and Mason Bockoven continued his hot run at the plate with a 1-2 count single. Shane Halligan followed with another base hit to load the bases for the Dodgers.

Dylan Zimmermann drove in a run to make it a 6-5 game as Ankeny was able to record the second out. With runners on the corners, though, Spear got the third out to end the game.

Halligan went 2-for-3 and Brycen Bell scored twice for the Dodgers. Miller, Bockoven, Zimmermann, Bell, Carson Peterson and Jace Ulrich each had a hit, with Callon, Zimmermann, Bell and Ulrich driving in a run each.

Bell, part of Fort Dodge’s state track relays this past spring that earned a handful of medals, went from first-to-third in the third inning on a single by Peterson. Callon’s sacrifice fly brought him in for the first Dodger run.

In the top of the sixth, Ulrich connected on the first pitch he saw for a double, plating Halligan. Bell singled in pinch runner Drake Callon and Bell again showed off his speed by advancing to third on an error and scoring on a wild pitch.

On the mound, Callon pitched five innings, striking out two. Zimmermann pitched the sixth, allowing just one hit and striking out one.

For Ankeny, Brody Brecht was 3-for-3 with two runs and two RBI. Jase Bauer also drove in a pair of runs. Brecht earned the win, striking out seven over six innings with four walks.

This marked the final game in a Dodger uniform for seniors Callon, Miller and Anthony Wagner.