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BE VFW loses at tourney

By Staff | Jul 30, 2017

BE’s Gavin Strombeck lays down a bunt during Thursday’s game against New Ulm Gold.

After their thrilling success in 2nd District Southwest Sub-District competition, the boys of Blue Earth VFW Post 4580 took their talents to the Second District Baseball Tournament. BE opened the tournament as the seventh seeded team in the eight team field. Meanwhile, Wells-USC occupied the eighth seed.

Blue Earth had made it to the next round of the playoffs on the strength of their relentless small ball attack. Their last win over United South Central featured a successful suicide squeeze bunt by Hunter Bleess that drove home the eventual winning run.

That victory over USC sent them to the district tournament.

Hosted by Mankato VFW Post 950, as well as the Mankato Area Youth Baseball Association, the tournament began at Franklin Rogers Park in Mankato starting on Thursday, July 27.

Unfortunately, things did not go BE’s way in their first game of the tournament as they were steamrolled by New Ulm Gold, 15-1.

The ballgame was fairly close through five innings with New Ulm Gold holding a 4-1 lead. However, New Ulm added four runs in the top of the sixth and seven runs in the top of the seventh to blow the game open.

Defensively, New Ulm displayed flawless glove work throughout, committing no errors. Meanwhile, Blue Earth was charged with five errors.

The only scoring from Blue Earth happened in the bottom of the third inning. Koby Nagel led off with a bunt single, and advanced to second on a Caelan Sanders single. Both base runners moved up an additional 90 feet thanks to Gavin Storbeck’s sacrifice bunt. Nagel then scored from third on Karson Legred’s sacrifice fly.

Hunter Bleess took the loss for Blue Earth as he pitched 6 1/3 innings. Despite the lopsided score, BE coach Brent Legred was proud of the way his team carried itself in defeat.

“Every one of our players have made a major contribution,” Legred said. “This group of kids really likes playing together win or lose, and that has been the key for us.”

A two loss elimination tournament, Blue Earth was in action again on Friday against Hutchinson, in an elimination game. Results of this game can be found in next week’s edition of the Faribault County Register.