Fireworks both on and off the field

Abe Winter
Star Columnist

A boom off the bat of Jacob Swope

When Jacob Swope of the Miles City Mavericks was batting in the third inning of Wednesday’s second game of a doubleheader against Dawson County (Glendive), his bat seemingly produced what could be classified as a “mini” sonic boom.

Just as his bat struck the ball, there was a thunderous boom from fireworks being set off just beyond the centerfield fence. It couldn’t have been timed any better.

Well, it could have been better for Swope. The ball routinely dropped into the glove of the second baseman for an out and the Mavericks went on to lose 10-7 after winning Game 1 by a 9-7 score.

Meanwhile, the whole game was played as fireworks filled the air. It didn’t seem to affect the action on the field. But some of the players, fans and one sports reporter probably went home with sore ears.

As I departed, one family was still setting off fireworks when a police officer arrived on the scene to quell the activity. It was 10:28 p.m., which was 28 minutes after the allotted allowance of fireworks being set off within the city limits the day after the Fourth.



— Although the Mavericks and Outlaws aren’t home this or next weekend, fans can gear up for continuous action starting in two weekends.

The Mavericks have concluded their home schedule in the regular season, but will be the host team in the Eastern A District tournament from July 20-23 at Connors Stadium. They hope to play their best baseball of the season and probably will have to if they want to qualify for the State A Tournament the following week in Three Forks.

But the team seems confident it can do just that.

“I think we’ll be a very competitive team, one everyone needs to watch out for,” Mavericks second baseman Clay Prell said.

The Outlaws have three doubleheaders at Tedesco Field starting next Saturday, July 22 against Sturgis, South Dakota, and continuing Sunday and Monday with four games against Casper, Wyoming. Games are at 4:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. each of the three days.

Then comes the CABA 14U World Series from July 27 through Aug. 2 with 16 teams, including the host 14U Outlaws. Games will be played all day and into the night at both Tedesco and Connors.

— One of the joys of covering baseball games is the opportunity to sit and talk about the sport with Casey Stengel.

Nearing 94, Casey easily follows the action and offers opinions on the strike zone and coaching strategy. 

When the Miles City man, who was the grand marshal in the city’s downtown parade on the Fourth, leaves the stadium, his usual question is, “When do they play again?”

And when they do, he’ll be there.

— Liz Lewis, the former Miles Community College women’s basketball coach who has a similar position at Dickinson State, a four-year school, will have three players on her 2017-18 roster who played for the Pioneers.

The list includes Chelsey Borden, a 5-5 point guard who transferred from Sam Houston University after transferring to the Texas school from MCC; Jennifer Burnham, a 5-7 guard from West Valley, Utah, who played one year at MCC; and Isidora Tasovic, a 5-6 point guard from Serbia who played one season at MCC.

Lewis also recruited 5-10 forward Madison Jo Hansen of Broadus.

They are among seven who will join three returning players at DSU.

(Contact Abe Winter at or 406-234-0450.)