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Legion Post 15 loses 3 in Water Carnival; head into Sub-State

Legion Post 15’s Jacob Anderson tries to twist a double play against Hibbing Saturday during the Water Carnival Tournament. DL NEWSPAPERS/Brian Basham

The learning curve continued for the youthful Detroit Lakes Post 15 baseball team, after going 0-3 in last weekend’s Water Carnival Tournament at Washington Ballpark.

The Post 15 squad will now enter Sub-State tournament play as the No. 8 seed and will face top seed Moorhead Thursday at 1 p.m. in Perham.

DL lost to Fargo 6-0 Friday, to Hibbing 5-2 Saturday and against Moorhead Sunday by the score of 12-5.

The consistent factor in each game was one bad inning.

“We let up in one inning and it stung us every time,” said DL head coach Mitch McLeod.

“That’s our youth showing.”

Post 15 ace Connor Johnson pitched well against a potent Fargo lineup, but it was that one key frame which did DL in.

That inning came in the form of a six-run first inning, as a leadoff walk and error led to a two-run double.

That in turn resulted in a couple more walks, as Fargo scored four more runs with two outs on the board.

“Connor struggled in that first inning but shut them out the rest of the way,” McLeod said.

Johnson had seven strikeouts in the game, while Sam Voz went 2-3 with a double.

Post 15 held a 2-0 lead over Hibbing with Matt Haire pitching, but the visitors tied the game 2-2 with a two-run third, then took a one-run lead in the fourth.

Voz came in for relief of Haire and struck out five in 3.2 innings of work.

Johnson led the Post 15 offensive attack by going 2-3 with a double. Each of Brett Nephew and Kavon Schumacher had RBI singles in the first inning.

Moorhead struck for five runs in the opening frame on DL pitcher Austin LaFriniere, but were shutout in the second and third.

But Moorhead added insurance runs in the fourth with two outs, as Matt Bergren came in for relief of Schumacher and threw well in his three innings of work, allowing just one unearned run.

Kai McLeod and Nephew each had two hits.

“Our four veterans in Johnson, Voz, Nephew and Sam Beck have been hitting the ball consistently,” Mitch McLeod said.

The normal formula of good pitching, defense and timely hitting will be the key for DL to upset Moorhead Thursday, with Johnson getting the starting pitching duties.

“We can’t allow Moorhead to get on base for free,” McLeod said.

“We may score only three or four runs, so we need to keep them off the bases and make the plays defensively.”

Other games Thursday in Perham include (4) Alexandria vs. (5) Thief River Falls; (2) East Grand Forks vs. (7) Fergus Falls; (3) Perham vs. (6) Bemidji.

Loser bracket games are at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. as all tournament games will be held in Perham.

Brian Wierima
Detroit Lakes Newspapers Sports Editor for the last 15 years. St. Cloud State University graduate, who hails from Deer Creek, MN.