State tournament berth eludes Rosetown legion once again

After two years of the sub-state era of Minnesota American Legion baseball, Rosetown has yet to enjoy any post-season success. The Rockets went 0-2 in last week’s Sub-State 7 tournament to fall to 0-4 in sub-state playoff games.

Rosetown entered the tournament as the No. 6 seed and faced a pair of teams from the Third District. In the first round, Rosetown took on third-seeded Kramer-Berg, which is made up of players from the Mahtomedi High School team that qualified for the state tournament back in June.

Kramer-Berg had little sympathy for Rosetown in a 15-1, seven-inning victory on July 22 at North St. Paul. Kramer-Berg belted a pair of first-inning home runs to take an early three-run lead and didn’t look back. Three doubles resulted in two runs in the second inning and a double and single gave Kramer-Berg a single run in the third.

The offensive barrage continued in the fourth inning as Kramer-Berg scored two runs on two doubles and a triple.

Rosetown scored its only run in the top of the fifth on three singles. Noah Lyden and Zac Seeger led off the inning with back-to-back singles and moved to second and third, respectively, on Nick Tuominen’s sacrifice bunt. Jesper Horsted then drove in Lyden with an infield single.

A more substantial rally was snuffed out when Horsted broke for second base on a hit-and-run play with Ian Harlander at the plate and one out. Harlander lifted a fly ball to right field for an out and Horsted, who was nearly to second base when the ball was caught, was easily doubled off first for an inning-ending double play.

Kramer-Berg continued to pile up the runs by scoring six in the fifth inning and one in the sixth. With a 14-run lead going in the seventh inning, Kramer-Berg closed out the game by retiring the Rockets 1-2-3.

Kramer-Berg ended up with 17 hits and 12 of them went for extra bases, including three home runs and one triple.

Rosetown managed five hits and two walks. Horsted went 3-for-3 and had Rosetown’s only run batted in. Lyden had a single and a walk, Seeger collected a single and Harlander had the Rockets’ other base on balls.

The loss dropped Rosetown into the losers’ bracket and an elimination game against seventh-seeded Oakdale. Playing a lower seed didn’t help Rosetown much, however, as Oakdale, which lost to Eagle Legion (Totino-Grace) in the first round, eliminated the Rockets from the tournament with a 7-0 victory.

Oakdale then bowed out of the tournament following a third-round, 8-3 loss to top-seeded North St. Paul.

For the second straight year, the fifth seed ended up winning Sub-State 7. Last year, Kramer-Berg, which benefitted as three of the top four seeds lost in the first round, went 4-1 as the No. 5 seed.

This year, Hamline Purple (Cretin-Derham Hall) was the surprise at No. 5. Hamline beat fourth-seeded West. St. Paul, top-seeded North St. Paul and second-seeded Eagle Legion to reach the finals.

In the finals, Eagle Legion won game one 4-2 but Hamline bounced back to win the title with a 12-2, eight-inning victory in game two.

Hamline Purple is one of two Fourth District teams playing in the state tournament this weekend. Joining Purple is Tri-City Red, which clinched its spot in the state tournament by winning the Sub-State 8 championship on Sunday night. Red, which won the Fourth District title this summer, was the No. 1 seed in its sub-state tournament and went a perfect 4-0 in the playoffs.

Hamline Purple opens the state tournament Friday at 1:15 p.m. at Alimagnet Park in Burnsville against the champion from Sub-State 15. Tri-City Red’s first game is Friday at 1 p.m. at Red Haddox Field in Bloomington against the Sub-State 1 champion Rochester Redhawks.

This is the first time the Fourth District has sent two teams to the state tournament since 2002 when both Tri-City Red and North St. Paul made it. Back then, there were two “roving” at-large berths that moved from district to district each year and in 2002 the Fourth District had one. North St. Paul won the district tournament that year and Tri-City Red was the runner-up and both teams moved on to the state tournament.

Brian Meyers can be reached at bmeyers@lillienews.com.
 


Sub-State 7 American  Legion baseball playoffs

First round
Game 1 — Kramer-Berg 15, Rosetown 1, 7 innings
Game 2 — Eagle Legion 10, Oakdale 0, 7 innings
Game 3 — Hamline Purple 11, West St. Paul 7
Game 4 — North St. Paul 7, Hamline Red 6

Second round
Game 5 — Oakdale 7, Rosetown 0 (Rosetown eliminated)
Game 6 — West St. Paul 10, Hamline Red 0 (Hamline Red eliminated)
Game 7 — Eagle Legion 4, Kramer-Berg 3
Game 8 — Hamline Purple 12, North St. Paul 9

Third round
Game 9 — West St. Paul 13, Kramer-Berg 5 (Kramer-Berg eliminated)
Game 10 — North St. Paul 8, Oakdale 3 (Oakdale eliminated)
Game 11 — Hamline Purple 13, Eagle Legion 2

Fourth round
Game 12 — North St. Paul 6, West St. Paul 5 (West St. Paul eliminated)

Fifth round
Game 13 — Eagle Legion 4, North St. Paul 1 (North St. Paul eliminated)

Championship round
Game 14 — Eagle Legion 4, Hamline Purple 2
Game 15 — Hamline Purple 12, Eagle Legion 2, 8 innings (Hamline Purple wins sub-state championship and advances to the state tournament)

2014 Minnesota American Legion baseball tournament

August 1-4 at Eagan, Bloomington, Burnsville
Participating teams

Sub-State 1 — Rochester Redhawks
Sub-State 2 — New Ulm Gold
Sub-State 3 — Chaska
Sub-State 4 - Excelsior
Sub-State 5 - Burnsville
Sub-State 6 — Lakeville North
Sub-State 7 — Hamline Purple
Sub-State 8 — Tri-City Red
Sub-State 9 - Champlin
Sub-State 10 — Nisswa or Hermantown
Sub-State 11 - Delano
Sub-State 12 — St. Cloud Chutes
Sub-State 13 — St. Francis
Sub-State 14 — Alexandria
Sub-State 15 - Hutchinson
Host - Eagan
 

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