Buccaneer Baseball Season Ends Tuesday
The Waterville-Elysian-Buccaneers tried to take advantage of their home field while hosting the Section 2AA Baseball Tournament but came up just short. The Buccaneers defeated North Subsection top seed St. Peter 2-1 at W.J. Grose Field Tuesday then fell to Belle Plaine 7-2. Belle Plaine will now play Jordan Thursday at 5:00 p.m. in Waterville to determine who goes to the State Class 2A Baseball Tournament in St. Cloud next week.
The St. Peter game was a classic pitcher's duel. Junior Bladyn Bartelt held the Saints to five hits and struck out 15 batters. Junior Andy Regner countered for St. Peter and fanned 10 Bucs while allowing 7 hits. Bartelt not only threw a masterpiece but helped his cause with three hits and Regner also led St. Peter with two hits in the game.
Waterville-Elysian-Morristown was the visitor in the contest and scored a run in the first inning. Sophomore Grant McBroom was hit by a pitch with a 1-1 count. Bartelt cracked a double sending McBroom to third and the Buccaneers appeared to be focused for the victory. After the first out was recorded senior Michael Ungs hit a single to left scoring McBroom. Bartelt advanced to third and the Buccaneers were up 1-0. Regner then struck out the next two batters to end the possibility of a multiple run inning.
Waterville-Elysian-Morristown had their chances to break the game open in the top of the third inning. They loaded the bases on singles by McBroom and Bartelt and a walk to senior Will Storch but Regner struck out the next two batters swinging and another batter looking to put that threat to bed.
St. Peter tied the game in the bottom of the third inning. Bartelt struck out the first batter then walked the next. A second out was recorded on a pop out before Regner singled. Junior Tyson Sowder clubbed a double scoring the walked batter and the game was tied at one run each.
In the top of the fourth the Buccaneers went ahead to stay. The first batter was fanned. Senior Adam Rients was hit by a pitch on a 1-0 count. With one out senior Jacob Meskan sacrifices Rients to second base. Junior Parker Bahnsen was brought in to run for Rients at second. McBroom was hit by a pitch on a 1-0 count. Bartelt then delivered a grounder to short and a throwing error allowed Bahnsen to score what was eventually the winning run.
In the Belle Plaine game the Bucs were again the visitors on their home field and saw the Tigers score three runs in the first inning that included back to back doubles by Belle Plaine and back to back errors by Waterville-Elysian-Morristown.
Bartelt threw the first two thirds of an inning after going the distance in the first game but ran up against the pitch count rule. He allowed 3 hits, 3 runs, 2 earned, walked one and had no strikeouts. Junior Jayson Schneider pitched the next 4 2/3 innings allowing 4 runs, 2 earned, 4 hits, walked 1 and struck out 3 batters. Senior Michael Ungs pitched the last 2/3 of an inning with one hit and a walk in his scoreless work.
The Buccaneers had 8 errors in the game and Belle Plaine had 4 errors. The Tigers added a run in the fifth and three runs in the sixth to seal the win.
Waterville-Elysian-Morristown notched a run in the fifth inning when Bahnsen went in to courtesy run, stole second and went to third on a wild pitch. He scored on a ground out that made the score 3-1.
The Buccaneers scored another run in the top of the sixth on a Belle Plaine error.
It was the abrupt end to the high school careers of five seniors. Will Storch, Jacob Meskan, Adam Rients, Michael Ungs and Tyson Miska.
Waterville-Elysian-Morristown finished their season with a 14-6 record. St. Peter was 14-7 and Belle Plaine is now 13-8.
The Tigers go back to Waterville on Thursday and play Jordan for the Section 2AA title. Belle Plaine has to win twice to advance. Jordan is 13-8.
The two teams are in the Minnesota River Conference and split a doubleheader during the regular season before Jordan beat Belle Plain in the winner's bracket of the tournament on Saturday.
In other Section baseball Tuesday night: Rushford-Peterson is going to the State Class A Tournament after defeating Lyle-Pacelli 7-6 in Austin for the Section 1A title.
Rochester Lourdes beat Caledonia in the first game 4-3 to force a second contest won by the Warriors 7-0 giving Caledonia a trip to state in baseball after football and basketball trips. The Warriors are the Section 1AA champs.
Red Wing beat Winona 18-7 Tuesday evening in the elimination bracket final in Red Wing before the Wingers defeated Austin 6-5. The bracket says the Wingers are the Section 1AAA titlists.
In Section 2AAA which is the section the Falcons played in Mankato West downed Marshall in the elimination bracket final 5-4 at Mueller Park in New Ulm to set up the championship. Thursday at 5:00 p.m. Mankato West goes back to New Ulm to play the Eagles and the Scarlets have to win twice to advance to state.
Section 1AAAA Lakeville North repeats as section champs with a 9-0 win over Farmington in Dundas.
Section 3AAAA the number six seed Apple Valley beat #7 seed Burnsville 3-0 at Memorial Park in Dundas to advance to the title contest. The Eagles must beat Eastview of Apple Valley twice to advance to the state tournament. Eastview was the top seed in the section. The first game is 4:00 p.m. Wednesday in Dundas.