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Fast start to season: Marquette County Mavericks open Superiorland Baseball League season with 11-0 shutout of Negaunee Blasters

The Marquette County Mavericks’ Jacob Adriano, right, tosses the ball to pitcher Steve Hinstala to get a forceout during the first inning of a Superiorland Baseball League game against the Negaunee Blasters on opening night, Monday, in Gwinn. (Journal photo by Ryan Stieg)

“It’s been a long, cold, lonely winter. So we’re all pretty happy to be back out.” — James Larsen II, team member, Marquette County Mavericks

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GWINN — Last summer’s Superiorland Baseball League season was shortened due to complications of the COVID-19 pandemic, and like many sports in 2020, things just weren’t the same.

Now, things appear to be back to normal for the local five-team league as the 2021 season began Monday night as the Marquette County Mavericks got rolling from the opening pitch.

The Mavericks plated two runs in the first inning and didn’t look back as they defeated the Negaunee Blasters 11-0 in five innings. Steve Hintsala got the shutout win on the mound for MC.

The Marquette County Mavericks' Steve Hintsala pitches during the second inning of a Superiorland Baseball League game against the Negaunee Blasters on opening night, Monday, in Gwinn. (Journal photo by Ryan Stieg)

The teams seemed to be in good spirits throughout the game and the Mavericks’ James Larsen II said it was nice to be back on the diamond again.

“It feels amazing,” he said. “It’s been a long, cold, lonely winter. So we’re all pretty happy to be back out.”

The Mavs picked up their first run on an RBI single by Hintsala, which scored Larsen, and got its second run when Aaron Adriano was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded.

Up 2-0 in the second, Hintsala drew a bases-loaded walk, which was followed by an RBI single by Spencer Larson. Two batters later, Adriano drove in a run with a base hit and the Mavericks had a 5-0 cushion.

The Mavs didn’t let up in the third. Hintsala drove in two more runs with a long double and Larson pushed another run across on a sacrifice fly.

MC then pretty much put the game away in the fourth. Jake Spear drove in a run with a sac fly, and after Larsen socked a double, Adriano hit a single that plated another run. Hintsala followed with a single and then Larson knocked in a run with a base hit that capped off MC’s scoring.

MC travels to Channing to play the Railroaders at 7 p.m. EDT Monday, while the Blasters host Coldwell Banker-Craig Heinonen at 6:30 p.m. Before that, a rare non-Monday game will be played in the league at 7 p.m. Thursday when Channing travels to Escanaba to take on Elmer’s County Market.

Ryan Stieg can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 252. His email address is rstieg@miningjournal.net.

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