VFW boys sit at 19-4, win consolation title in St. Cloud
It’s been a stellar summer season for the VFW Post 4210 baseball team so far. The Forest Lake squad now sits at 19-4 overall after winning the consolation title at the East Side VFW tournament in St. Cloud over the weekend.
On Friday night, Post 4210 suffered a narrow 5-4 loss to Duluth, but came back to win two in a row on Saturday over Monticello (9-1) and St. Cloud Cathedral (9-5) to earn a place in the consolation championship game on Sunday. Forest Lake beat Mahtomedi 7-4 in the final East Side matchup.
Last Tuesday, Post 4210 traveled to Cambridge for a double-header and won the first game, 12-3, with the help of a complete game by Nick Hale on the mound.
In the second game, Forest Lake rallied to come back from an 8-5 deficit in the sixth inning, and it took a seventh-inning comeback to defeat a pesky Cambridge squad. Forest Lake tied the game 8-8 on a Luke Wallner double in the sixth inning, but Cambridge bounced back and pushed the go-ahead run across the plate in top half of the seventh.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, trailing 9-8, Derick Johnson delivered a one-out double to key the rally. Eric Ellefson followed with a triple, scoring Johnson to tie the game. Derek Dahly reached on a base on balls and then Jake Schmitz delivered a walk-off three-run homer to win the game, 12-9.
Later in the week, Forest Lake posted another comeback win against Armstrong, which came into the matchup 9-2 in league play. Armstrong came out swinging to take a 5-0 after four innings, but Forest Lake rallied again, posting three runs in the fourth inning with the help of a two-out hit by Tyler Lindstrom to score two runs and close the gap to 5-3.
In the fifth inning, Post 4210 plated three more runs to take a 6-5 lead. Lindstrom added a third RBI with a sacrifice fly to score what would prove to be the winning run. Justin Grant, in only his second appearance on the mound, went six strong innings and allowed three earned runs. J.T. DeSmet closed the door in the seventh to earn the save.
Forest Lake hosted St. Francis in a double-header on Tuesday night, and traveled to North Branch for an afternoon game on Wednesday. Next, Post 4210 hosts a split double-header starting at 1:30 p.m. against Maple Grove then 4 p.m. against Rogers.
Playoffs begin next week for the squad, with times yet to be determined.