Published on Wednesday, 30 November -0001 00:00
By Julie Bulau, Staff writer
The EV-W American Legion baseball team came home with the consolation championship from the Minnesota American Legion Baseball Division Tournament Aug. 3-5 in Sacred Heart.
The opening game Friday saw EV-W fall to eventual champion Plato in extra innings. In an epic pitching duel between EV-W's Hayden Willner and Plato's Adam Prehn, neither team managed to cross home plate in the first seven innings of play.
Plato scored first in the top of the eighth on a controversial call, when a batter swung a third strike, but the umpire ruled he was hit by the pitch. The batter eventually scored to put Plato up 1-0. EV-W, however, responded by scoring a run of its own in the bottom of the eighth.
Things fell apart for EV-W in the top of the ninth when Plato sent nine batters to the plate and scored four runs. EV-W then went scoreless in the bottom of the ninth. Willner pitched 8-1/3 innings and took the loss with John Bautch coming in relief.
The loss dropped EV-W, the defending State and Central Plains Regional Champ, into the loser's bracket where they faced Luverne in the first game Saturday morning. EV-W scored one in the second, two in the fifth and six in the sixth, to roll to a 9-2 win. EV-W catcher Brendan Ashton had a big game at the plate with a three-run RBI double in the sixth. John Bautch went the distance to pick up the win.
The win advanced EV-W to the consolation championship game against host team Sacred Heart. EV-W scored two in the first, three in the second and one in the third, and cruised to a 6-0 win. Alex Geislinger went the distance for the win.
Plato won the championship to advance to the Central Plains Regional next week in Wapeton, S.D. Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, the
team that beat Ely in the second round, was ejected from the tournament for unsportsman-like conduct, so Ely ended up winning the third-place game and advancing to the championship where they fell to Plato 4-3. However, Ely also advanced to Regionals as runners-up.
from Heath Kramer,
Kevin Kramer, John Bautch, Brendan Ashton, and Hayden Willner were all named to the District 7 All Tournament Team.
We had our state tourney this weekend and it didn't go as planned, as we lost our opening game to Plato 5-1 in extra innings. They were a very good ball team. We came back to win our next two games and ended up getting consolation champs. John Bautch got the win in our second game over Luverne, and he finished the year 4-0 on the mound, and Alex Geislinger got the win in our third game, shutting out our opponent Sacred Heart 6-0. Alex finished the year 3-0 on the mound.
Here are some of our leaders
Kevin Kramer finished the year hitting an unreal.522, and an even better.917 with runners in scoring position. Alex Geislinger finished hitting.419, Brendan Ashton hit.351 on the year, Hayden Willner was right on his tail finishing at.350, and Grant Warren had a big turn around on his slow start, and came back to finish hitting.294. This was very big because we needed his bat in there to make it where we did this year. We did not get what we wanted in the end, but after losing that first game, I couldn't have asked for more. Kevin Kramer couldn't have said it any more perfectly to his teammates Saturday morning, "Our parents and these fans came here to watch us play some good baseball, now let's not let them down." And we didn't. We finished the season 13-6, which was pretty impressive after our 1-4 start to the season.
Big thanks to my assistant Miah Kramer, couldn't have done it without him, and that's why I wanted him going into the year. And the entire team would like to say thanks to all the fans and especially Jim Haag, the business manager, who takes care of everything and makes this all possible.