2017 District Baseball Tournament set to begin
The Winnebago/Blue Earth Post 82 and 89 will try to separate themselves from the rest of the pack in American Legion summer baseball. Firing on all cylinders, the squad has their sights set on a state tournament bid.
Winnebago/BE was scheduled to host the American Legion District Tournament on July 14. Their game against Wabasso took place at the Faribault County Fairgrounds at 8 p.m, after the Faribault County Register’s deadline for this week’s issue. Details of the game will be available in next week’s edition.
In total, eight teams are competing in this double-elimination tournament. With a very talented supporting cast behind him, Winnebago/BE pitcher Logan Jahnke has enjoyed a stellar summer in Legion competition.
Jahnke came into the contest against Wabasso as the workhorse of the staff, compiling team highs in wins (4) and innings pitched (34). Head coach Steve Sonnicksen noted Jahnke’s electric fastball combined with a deceptive curveball that usually keeps hitters off-balance.
Offensively, Big South All-Conference performer Kaylan Legred is among those who have made their presence felt in the Winnebago/BE batting order. Legred sports a .347 average this summer and utilizes his great speed to set the table for Winnebago/BE’s offense at the top of the lineup.
Batting in the cleanup position, Jesus Quintero usually swings the bat with bad intentions. His aggressive style of hitting has helped the 2017 BEA graduate compile a .333 batting average in American Legion competition.
As for Alan Davids, the 2016 BEA graduate owns the highest batting average on the team (.378). The ultimate utility player, coach Sonnicksen feels comfortable placing Davids at virtually any position on the baseball diamond. Sonnicksen credits Davids’ baseball IQ and instincts for the game as key components to his excellent versatility.
“Some positions work better than others, but he has played lots of baseball, so he knows the game inside and out,” Sonnicksen explained. “Alan really knows what each position entails, so he is able to excel anywhere.”
With the tournament concluding next week, the winner will earn the opportunity to compete in the state tournament which is held in Spicer, Minnesota. Competing in Subsection C, coach Sonnicksen feels his team has as good a chance as any other to advance to state.
“There are a lot of great teams in the tournament, but if we play solid defense and get timely hitting and strong pitching, the state tournament is not out of the picture,” Sonnicksen says. “Our expectations are pretty high since we advance to the district tournament quite frequently.”