Eagles abound at the 2013 MSHSL State Softball Tournament in Mankato Thursday and Friday, June 6 and 7, as the Eagles of Eden Valley-Watkins battled the New York Mills Eagles and the New Life Academy Woodbury Eagles, in their quest for the number one title. Falling just short of the state championship game, the Eden Valley-Watkins softball team put on a great show for the fans at Caswell Park in Mankato last week. The girls took the opening game on Thursday, June 6, against a formidable New York Mills team, 4-2. Losing a tough battle to New Life Academy of Woodbury in the afternoon game, 6-4, the Eagles fought back on Friday morning, June 7, to defeat the Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg Fighting Saints, 7-2, and take the Third-Place trophy. The 2013 Eagles saw the best year in the history of the program, posting an overall record of 16-5 and placing third in the state tournament. EV-W coach Dave Dziengel is proud of his team and very appreciative of the overwhelming support. “On behalf of me and my coaching staff, we would like to thank all of the parents, fans, EV-W Lions, the booster club, the administration, media, and everyone that took time out of their schedules to come and watch us play for two days in Mankato. We really appreciate it and we feel fortunate to have such loyal fans.”
The girls received a Fire Department escort in both Eden Valley and in Watkins (above) on their way to North Mankato last Wednesday, June 5. Staff photo by Jean Doran Matua.
Eden Valley-Watkins High School senior Hayden Willner will join the select few chosen to play in the Minnesota High School All-Star Series, June 20-22, at Chaska Athletic Park. The All-Star Series, since its 1975 inception, recognizes the best Minnesota graduating seniors from the sport of baseball. Twenty baseball players are chosen to represent their area of the state in a “round robin” tournament, and Willner joins the North squad. The City of Chaska and its gorgeous Athletic Park are the host and venue for all of the festivities, which include a banquet for selected players, coaches, and families, on Thursday evening, and award ceremonies on the field at 5 p.m. on Saturday afternoon. The complete schedule is available at the website: www.mshsbca.org/page/show/823345-2013-schedule-of-events.
The 2013 Tournament is presented by Play Ball! Minnesota, a Minnesota Twins Community Fund and youth organizations partnership, designed to promote and advance the games of youth baseball and softball around the state.
The Eden Valley-Watkins Eagles defeated the New York Mills Eagles, 4-2, at 9 a.m. today, Thursday, June 6. They lost to the New Life Academy Eagles, 4-6, at 3 p.m. today in the semifinal match-up. EV-W will vie for State Third Place at 11 a.m. Friday, June 7.
The team had a grand send-off from the EV-W high school Wednesday at noon, and they had a Fire Dept. escort through Eden Valley and through Watkins on their way to North Mankato. (photo is of the bus on Central Ave. in Watkins)
The winner’s bracket of the Section 5A Softball Tournament once again featured the Eden Valley-Watkins softball team. The Eagles trounced the Isle Huskies Tuesday, May 28, 16-1, in a 5-inning affair at St. Cloud’s Whitney Parks. Eden Valley-Watkins coach Dave Dziengel is happy to be in the driver’s seat. “We put ourselves in a great position by winning this game and advancing to the Section 5A Championship for the second year in a row.” The Eagles victory was never really in doubt, as they posted 11 runs in the first 3 innings. “We hit the ball very well today as we collected
11 hits, and we were also fortunate to take advantage of 6 Isle walks and 4 hit batters,” Dziengel said.
Next stop: State Tourney
The Eden Valley-Watkins softball team won the Section 5A Championship Thursday, May 30, beating Isle, 8-4, behind the strong arm of complete game-winner Baylee Lahr. The Eagles soared through the winner’s bracket, ousting a good Isle team for the second time, at Whitney Parks in St. Cloud. Eden Valley-Watkins coach Dave Dziengel is excited for the girls and is proud of their accomplishments this year. “We won the Section 5A Championship today using a total team effort. Baylee Lahr did a great job of limiting a very good Isle team to 4 runs on 6 hits. She also had 4 strikeouts and 1 walk.” Ultimately, the battle was decided on the mound, as Lahr gave up just 1 walk, and the Isle pitcher surrendered 6 walks to the Eagles, along with 5 hit batters. “We look forward to playing another week together at Caswell Park,” Dziengel said.