Three picked for SCC first team
Blue Earth Area baseball’s Josh Amundson, Joe Franta and Taylor Owen have all received first team South Central Conference honors for their performances on the diamond in 2011.
Josh Amundson led BEA from the plate, finishing the year with a scintillating .509 batting average. The senior racked up a total of 29 hits and 16 RBI from his number three spot in the batting order.
Amundson’s season highlight came against St. Peter on May 19. The Buc clean up hitter was on fire from the plate collecting three hits and six RBI. Two of Amundson’s three hits were home-runs with hit number three resulting in a triple.
Amundson also had a good year on the mound, excelling in his role as a closer. The first teamer threw 17 innings, finishing with an ERA of 1.65.
Joe Franta was a solid contributor the entire year from the plate finishing with a .396 average.
The every-day number two hitter scored 15 runs causing havoc on the base paths for opposing teams.
In the season opener, Franta provided a major spark scoring four of the teams six runs against New Richland.
Taylor Owen was a workhorse on the mound for the Bucs, throwing 41 innings.
Owen was a power pitcher striking out 40 batters on the year. A rough start against New Ulm in his final outing inflated his ERA to 5.12.
Owen’s best outing of the year came against Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial when he threw 6 1/3 innings allowing only two hits and zero earned runs.
As a team, the Blue Earth Area baseball team’s 2011 season was a year of streaks. The Buccaneers finished the campaign with a 10-7 record.
The Bucs roared out of the box to win their first seven games.
BEA could not stick to their winning ways, however, and proceeded to lose the next five games.
The Bucs then bounced back to win their next three, before dropping their last two games of the season to New Ulm.
Six seniors made up this year’s squad: Brady Bleess, Dalton Hurn, Joe Franta, Josh Amundson, Taylor Owen and Collin Nienhaus.
Bleess played all three positions in the outfield over the course of the year,
Nienhaus patrolled the hot corner at third and Dalton Hurn was dependable from his roles as the leadoff hitter and shortstop.
“These six young men are excellent leaders and excellent people,” head coach Todd Schmidtke says. “Our baseball program will really miss them.”