Third District tourney underway
The American Legion Post 225 baseball team carried high hopes as the third seed into the Third District tournament this week. Forest Lake (16-6) opens play today (Wednesday) against either Prior Lake or East Ridge, who battled for the No. 14 seed with a play-in game on Monday.
The tournament is double-elimination so Forest Lake will play again in Dundas on Thursday, July 26, against either No. 6 Northfield or No. 11 Eagan.
“You’ve got to tip your hat to the kids,” said coach Valdie Magstadt. “They’ve played a lot of baseball in a short amount of time. We do not have a ton of bodies, but they went out there and competed and put themselves in a good spot.”
Eastview and Burnsville earned the top two seeds in the tournament, which runs through Saturday. Three of the 20 teams in the district tournament will advance to state.
Phil Sauer was set to start Wednesday’s playoff opener.
The team is still a little nicked up, Magstadt said, so he has lightened the practice load of late.
“Now it’s time to get after it,” he said.
Forest Lake clinched the Third District League F championship with a 4-3 win over Inver Grove Heights last Wednesday. Reid Larson got out of a bases-loaded jam in the final inning to earn the win in relief of Matt Schmidt, who made his first pitching appearance of the season.
The winning run scored in the sixth inning. Drew Svendsen walked and went on to score on a suicide squeeze bunt by Matt Savage.
Forest Lake scored three runs in the first inning. Noah Brown drove in two with a triple.
With the title secure, Post 225 dropped a doubleheader to Woodbury Blue on Sunday by scores of 5-4 and 10-3. Magstadt said his main objective was to make it through the day injury-free while getting in a few innings for several of the team’s main pitchers.
Brown and Kyle Parker had two hits apiece in the first game, while Jack Schmidt, Brown and Joe Vacinek each pitched.