Legion team concludes great season

by Rachael Paumen
Diving into the 2010 playoffs, the Maple Lake American Legion baseball team got things started with a game against Howard Lake before continuing with a game against Breck and another game against the same Breck team the following day. The team then traveled to Paynesville where they played Cross Lake, Staples, Sebeka and Holdingford.
   Legion vs. Howard Lake
Now into the post season, the Legion team kicked things off with a home game against Howard Lake for the first round of the District 10 playoffs on July 15.
Brian Redemske started things out on the right foot, with a base hit. Luke Fobbe followed with two strikes on him with a single. Redemske used some Howard Lake errors to move around the bases and came home on a passed ball. Fobbe did the same and, during Mitch Wurm’s at-bat, came home on a passed ball. However, the ball took a favorable bounce off the backstop for the Howard Lake catcher and Fobbe was called out. Wurm was then walked. Derek Rachel was up next and continued the hitting streak with a base hit. A passed ball advanced both runners and Wurm made it home on the following play. Back-to-back strikeouts on Cam Knudsen and Noah Kelm ended the inning prematurely but Maple Lake was now out to an early 2-0 lead.
Jake Johnson was the only man to make it on base in the second with a base hit but was left stranded as Howard Lake’s pitcher challenged Maple Lake.
The third inning was not an improvement for Maple Lake. Fobbe sent one back at the pitcher and was thrown out at first before Wurm was able to get a hit. He was caught stealing during Rachel’s at-bat and soon Rachel was retired as well.
Neither team had any luck scoring, or putting a string of men on base for that matter, until the sixth inning. Howard Lake began chipping away at Maple Lake’s lead and batted one around in the top of the sixth. Again in the seventh, HL connected for a hit and scored the tying run that would eventually push the game into extra innings.
It wasn’t until the bottom of the 10th inning that Maple Lake was able to combine for a run. Justin Bidwell led off with a walk before Redemske went down looking. Fobbe was up next and connected for a base hit to right field. Wurm continued with a double to score Fobbe as the game’s winning run.
Wurm took the mound for Maple Lake and threw all 10 innings for a complete game. Howard Lake’s ace, Andrew Ghostley, challenged Maple Lake through all 10 innings as well. This pitchers’ duel took just over two hours. Final score Maple Lake 3, Howard Lake 2.
AB R H RBI
B. Redemske 5 1 2 -
L. Fobbe 5 - 1 -
M. Wurm 5 1 2 1
D. Rachel 4 - 1 -
C. Knudsen 4 - - -
N. Kelm 4 - - -
H. Bryant 4 - 2 -
J. Johnson 4 - 1 -
J. Bidwell 3 - 1 -
 Legion vs. Breck
Continuing the tournament in Howard Lake, Maple Lake faced Breck on the following day, July 16. 
Helping Maple Lake out to an early lead, Redemske singled to get things started. Fobbe followed with a base hit. Wurm went down looking, to bring up Rachel who sent a sacrifice into the field, scoring Redemske. Fobbe helped himself, making his way around the bases and scoring during Knudsen’s at-bat. Knudsen connected for a hit to short but was thrown out at first.
Donnie Mavencamp waited and watched as four pitches missed the strike zone for a walk in the second. Johnson was up next and found a hole for a single. Breck’s pitcher took the next two batters himself to end the inning. 
Maple Lake went three-up, three-down in the third before Rachel came through with a triple to start the fourth. He was left on after Breck’s pitcher continued to retire the Legion batters in this, and the following innings.
Heading into the seventh inning, Maple Lake fell behind, 2-4, but didn’t let the runs go answered. Two outs from Johnson and Kelm put the Legion team at a disadvantage early but soon Bidwell was walked and Redemske followed with a base hit. Fobbe came through with a clutch hit to score both runners and send the game into extra innings. 
A one, two, three eighth inning led to the ninth in which the Legion team found themselves down by two points again. Showing perseverance, they were able to rally for three more runs. 
Johnson was walked before an error put Kelm on first. Bidwell then put down a bunt and Breck threw to third, in hopes of getting Johnson. The throw got by the third baseman and Johnson was allowed to score. Redemske then hit the first pitch into the left-center gap to score Kelm and Bidwell to win the game for Maple Lake, 7-6.
Cam Knudsen started as the Maple Lake pitcher and battled some tough Breck hitters for almost the entire game, finally coming out in the ninth. Fobbe came in to finish the job.
AB R H RBI
B. Redemske 5 2 3 3
L. Fobbe 4 1 2 2
M. Wurm 4 - - -
D. Rachel 3 - 1 1
C. Knudsen 4 - 1 -
D. Mavencamp 3 - 1 -
J. Johnson 3 1 1 -
N. Kelm 4 1 1 -
J. Bidwell 3 2 1 1
   Legion vs. Breck, game 2
After defeating Howard Lake to stay alive in the District 10 playoffs, Breck remained in the tournament and faced Maple Lake on July 17,  just one day after dropping a game to them.
Fobbe was walked to start things off before Wurm connected for a triple. Rachel stepped up to the plate and hit a nice single to bring Wurm in. Knudsen was up next and was walked to advance Rachel. Kelm forced an error to reach while Rachel was able to score. Knudsen made it home over the next three batters to bring the Maple Lake score to four.
The runs continued into the second inning with Redemske’s lead-off single. Fobbe was walked again to bring up Wurm who connected for a double, scoring Redemske. Rachel stepped up and followed with another double to bring both Fobbe and Wurm around. After being walked in the first inning, Knudsen waited for his pitch and hit a towering opposite field home run. Kelm and Johnson ended the inning with back-to-back outs.
Dedrek Berndtson walked in the bottom of the third to put a man on for Maple Lake. An error allowed Bidwell first base before a double from Redemske brought Berndtson home. Fobbe batted Bidwell in with a base hit and a short while later, a fielder’s choice on a hit from Rachel allowed Redemske to score. 
Now up with a commanding 12-2 lead, Maple Lake struggled to contain Breck in the top of the fourth. Refusing to go down without a fight, they put together six runs to close the gap, 12-8. After pitching the first three and two-thirds innings, Redemske was relieved by Fobbe, who came in to stop the fourth-inning rally. From there, Wurm took over and it was lights out for Breck.
Kelm popped one out in right field in the bottom of the fourth before Johnson was able to connect for a base hit. An infielder’s error allowed Berndtson to make it on safe and Redemske continued the inning with a hit to bring Johnson across the plate. Fobbe singled to bring Berndtson across but Redemske was thrown out, trying to steal home.  
Breck’s defense shut down Maple Lake in the fifth with three outs.
Leading off again, Kelm put himself on base with a single in the sixth before Johnson connected but was called out, still managing to advance Kelm. Berndtson earned himself a base hit and a pop from Bidwell brought Kelm in. Redemske then made it on with help from a Breck player but was left on, along with Berndtson and Bidwell. 
Maple Lake held Breck in the top of the seventh to end the game, 15-8.
AB R H RBI
B. Redemske 5 2 4 2
L. Fobbe 3 2 2 2
M. Wurm 5 2 2 3
D. Rachel 4 2 3 4
C. Knudsen 3 2 1 4
N. Kelm 4 1 2 1
J. Johnson 3 1 1 -
D. Berndtson 3 2 2 -
J. Bidwell 4 1 2 1
Legion vs. Cross Lake
Moving on in the playoffs, Maple Lake traveled to Paynesville to face Cross Lake on July 22.
Cross Lake’s starting pitcher had a unique delivery that befuddled the Irish throughout the game but Maple Lake was able to score two unearned runs in the first inning. Brian Redemske and Luke Fobbe both reached base on errors and scored. From here, they were able to hang onto their lead to win a close game.
Cam Knudsen pitched a solid game, going the whole way to earn the victory. Although Maple Lake’s bats were pretty quiet against Cross Lake, good defense and a few timely hits gave Maple Lake the 3-2 win. 
Legion vs. Staples
After watching Staples crush Paynesville 12-1, Maple Lake took the field, again on July 22, playing against a tough Staples team.
Mitch Wurm started on the mound for Maple Lake and did a great job, limiting Staples to only a handful of hits through seven innings. 
The problem for Maple Lake was that they were facing a tough pitcher as well, Staples’ Jordan Riewer.
With the score tied at 1-1 through seven innings, the game could have gone either way until the top of the eighth. Wurm singled and moved to second base when Derek Rachel worked a walk from Riewer. Cam Knudsen then came up with a clutch single to score Wurm.
That’s all the Irish needed as Wurm pitched a great bottom of the eighth inning, setting down the meat of the Staples’ line-up in order to get the victory. This 2-1 win put Maple Lake in a great position to advance to the state tournament.
“This was clearly the best game of the year for us,” Coach Matt Bergstrom said.
 Legion vs. Sebeka
Riding a winning streak, Maple Lake returned to Paynesville on July 23 for a match-up against Sebeka.
Maple Lake got out to a great start early versus Sebeka. After three innings they had a comfortable 8-2 lead. Jake Johnson had a couple hits in his first two at-bats. Luke Fobbe also got off to a great start with a two-run double. 
But, this comfortable lead soon vanished as Maple Lake’s pitchers struggled to find the strike zone. Some timely hitting from the Sebeka team with runners in scoring position, along with two home runs by the centerfielder put Sebeka ahead 11-9 by the top of the sixth inning. 
The Maple Lake hitters could not find any base hits after the big comeback by Sebeka. Maple Lake went down one, two, three in the bottom of the seventh to end the game 9-11.
   Legion vs. Holdingford
Following a tough loss to Sebeka, it was back to Paynesville for Maple Lake as they took on the team from Holdingford on July 24.
Maple Lake came out swinging in this Saturday match-up with a lead-off home run from Brian Redemske. 
“Redemske had an incredible tournament,” Bergstrom said. “He reached base multiple times in every game and hit another home run later versus Holdingford.”
Derek Rachel added a home run of his own later in the game to give Maple Lake the lead. Meanwhile, Justin Bidwell did a great job of pitching, He threw strikes and kept the Holdingford hitters off balance. 
Holdingford did manage to get runners on base in the seventh inning. A two-run double to the left-center gap tied the game. With a runner on second, the next Holdingford hitter hit a line drive that just tipped the glove of a sprinting Bidwell in centerfield. That brought home the go-ahead run for Holdingford. 
However, Maple Lake had a great opportunity to even the score in the bottom of the seventh inning. Mitch Wurm singled to lead off the inning. Rachel then placed a neat bunt down the first-base line. The pitcher fumbled the ball and could not get Rachel out, but Wurm was thrown out attempting to advance to third base. With one out the next two Irish batters grounded out to end the game, and the season. 
The Maple Lake Legion team finished the 2010 season with an 11-4 record. The team loses only one player to graduation for next season and looks to improve an already talented team.
Diving into the 2010 playoffs, the Maple Lake American Legion baseball team got things started with a game against Howard Lake before continuing with a game against Breck and another game against the same Breck team the following day. The team then traveled to Paynesville where they played Cross Lake, Staples, Sebeka and Holdingford.
   Legion vs. Howard Lake
Now into the post season, the Legion team kicked things off with a home game against Howard Lake for the first round of the District 10 playoffs on July 15.
Brian Redemske started things out on the right foot, with a base hit. Luke Fobbe followed with two strikes on him with a single. Redemske used some Howard Lake errors to move around the bases and came home on a passed ball. Fobbe did the same and, during Mitch Wurm’s at-bat, came home on a passed ball. However, the ball took a favorable bounce off the backstop for the Howard Lake catcher and Fobbe was called out. Wurm was then walked. Derek Rachel was up next and continued the hitting streak with a base hit. A passed ball advanced both runners and Wurm made it home on the following play. Back-to-back strikeouts on Cam Knudsen and Noah Kelm ended the inning prematurely but Maple Lake was now out to an early 2-0 lead.
Jake Johnson was the only man to make it on base in the second with a base hit but was left stranded as Howard Lake’s pitcher challenged Maple Lake.
The third inning was not an improvement for Maple Lake. Fobbe sent one back at the pitcher and was thrown out at first before Wurm was able to get a hit. He was caught stealing during Rachel’s at-bat and soon Rachel was retired as well.
Neither team had any luck scoring, or putting a string of men on base for that matter, until the sixth inning. Howard Lake began chipping away at Maple Lake’s lead and batted one around in the top of the sixth. Again in the seventh, HL connected for a hit and scored the tying run that would eventually push the game into extra innings.
It wasn’t until the bottom of the 10th inning that Maple Lake was able to combine for a run. Justin Bidwell led off with a walk before Redemske went down looking. Fobbe was up next and connected for a base hit to right field. Wurm continued with a double to score Fobbe as the game’s winning run.
Wurm took the mound for Maple Lake and threw all 10 innings for a complete game. Howard Lake’s ace, Andrew Ghostley, challenged Maple Lake through all 10 innings as well. This pitchers’ duel took just over two hours. Final score Maple Lake 3, Howard Lake 2.
Stats appear in this week's Messenger. 
 Legion vs. Breck
Continuing the tournament in Howard Lake, Maple Lake faced Breck on the following day, July 16. 
Helping Maple Lake out to an early lead, Redemske singled to get things started. Fobbe followed with a base hit. Wurm went down looking, to bring up Rachel who sent a sacrifice into the field, scoring Redemske. Fobbe helped himself, making his way around the bases and scoring during Knudsen’s at-bat. Knudsen connected for a hit to short but was thrown out at first.
Donnie Mavencamp waited and watched as four pitches missed the strike zone for a walk in the second. Johnson was up next and found a hole for a single. Breck’s pitcher took the next two batters himself to end the inning. 
Maple Lake went three-up, three-down in the third before Rachel came through with a triple to start the fourth. He was left on after Breck’s pitcher continued to retire the Legion batters in this, and the following innings.
Heading into the seventh inning, Maple Lake fell behind, 2-4, but didn’t let the runs go answered. Two outs from Johnson and Kelm put the Legion team at a disadvantage early but soon Bidwell was walked and Redemske followed with a base hit. Fobbe came through with a clutch hit to score both runners and send the game into extra innings. 
A one, two, three eighth inning led to the ninth in which the Legion team found themselves down by two points again. Showing perseverance, they were able to rally for three more runs. 
Johnson was walked before an error put Kelm on first. Bidwell then put down a bunt and Breck threw to third, in hopes of getting Johnson. The throw got by the third baseman and Johnson was allowed to score. Redemske then hit the first pitch into the left-center gap to score Kelm and Bidwell to win the game for Maple Lake, 7-6.
Cam Knudsen started as the Maple Lake pitcher and battled some tough Breck hitters for almost the entire game, finally coming out in the ninth. Fobbe came in to finish the job.
Stats appear in this week's Messenger.
   Legion vs. Breck, game 2
After defeating Howard Lake to stay alive in the District 10 playoffs, Breck remained in the tournament and faced Maple Lake on July 17,  just one day after dropping a game to them.
Fobbe was walked to start things off before Wurm connected for a triple. Rachel stepped up to the plate and hit a nice single to bring Wurm in. Knudsen was up next and was walked to advance Rachel. Kelm forced an error to reach while Rachel was able to score. Knudsen made it home over the next three batters to bring the Maple Lake score to four.
The runs continued into the second inning with Redemske’s lead-off single. Fobbe was walked again to bring up Wurm who connected for a double, scoring Redemske. Rachel stepped up and followed with another double to bring both Fobbe and Wurm around. After being walked in the first inning, Knudsen waited for his pitch and hit a towering opposite field home run. Kelm and Johnson ended the inning with back-to-back outs.
Dedrek Berndtson walked in the bottom of the third to put a man on for Maple Lake. An error allowed Bidwell first base before a double from Redemske brought Berndtson home. Fobbe batted Bidwell in with a base hit and a short while later, a fielder’s choice on a hit from Rachel allowed Redemske to score. 
Now up with a commanding 12-2 lead, Maple Lake struggled to contain Breck in the top of the fourth. Refusing to go down without a fight, they put together six runs to close the gap, 12-8. After pitching the first three and two-thirds innings, Redemske was relieved by Fobbe, who came in to stop the fourth-inning rally. From there, Wurm took over and it was lights out for Breck.
Kelm popped one out in right field in the bottom of the fourth before Johnson was able to connect for a base hit. An infielder’s error allowed Berndtson to make it on safe and Redemske continued the inning with a hit to bring Johnson across the plate. Fobbe singled to bring Berndtson across but Redemske was thrown out, trying to steal home.  
Breck’s defense shut down Maple Lake in the fifth with three outs.
Leading off again, Kelm put himself on base with a single in the sixth before Johnson connected but was called out, still managing to advance Kelm. Berndtson earned himself a base hit and a pop from Bidwell brought Kelm in. Redemske then made it on with help from a Breck player but was left on, along with Berndtson and Bidwell. 
Maple Lake held Breck in the top of the seventh to end the game, 15-8.
Stats appear in this week's Messenger.
   Legion vs. Cross Lake
Moving on in the playoffs, Maple Lake traveled to Paynesville to face Cross Lake on July 22.
Cross Lake’s starting pitcher had a unique delivery that befuddled the Irish throughout the game but Maple Lake was able to score two unearned runs in the first inning. Brian Redemske and Luke Fobbe both reached base on errors and scored. From here, they were able to hang onto their lead to win a close game.
Cam Knudsen pitched a solid game, going the whole way to earn the victory. Although Maple Lake’s bats were pretty quiet against Cross Lake, good defense and a few timely hits gave Maple Lake the 3-2 win. 
   Legion vs. Staples
After watching Staples crush Paynesville 12-1, Maple Lake took the field, again on July 22, playing against a tough Staples team.
Mitch Wurm started on the mound for Maple Lake and did a great job, limiting Staples to only a handful of hits through seven innings. 
The problem for Maple Lake was that they were facing a tough pitcher as well, Staples’ Jordan Riewer.
With the score tied at 1-1 through seven innings, the game could have gone either way until the top of the eighth. Wurm singled and moved to second base when Derek Rachel worked a walk from Riewer. Cam Knudsen then came up with a clutch single to score Wurm.
That’s all the Irish needed as Wurm pitched a great bottom of the eighth inning, setting down the meat of the Staples’ line-up in order to get the victory. This 2-1 win put Maple Lake in a great position to advance to the state tournament.
“This was clearly the best game of the year for us,” Coach Matt Bergstrom said.
 Legion vs. Sebeka
Riding a winning streak, Maple Lake returned to Paynesville on July 23 for a match-up against Sebeka.
Maple Lake got out to a great start early versus Sebeka. After three innings they had a comfortable 8-2 lead. Jake Johnson had a couple hits in his first two at-bats. Luke Fobbe also got off to a great start with a two-run double. 
But, this comfortable lead soon vanished as Maple Lake’s pitchers struggled to find the strike zone. Some timely hitting from the Sebeka team with runners in scoring position, along with two home runs by the centerfielder put Sebeka ahead 11-9 by the top of the sixth inning. 
The Maple Lake hitters could not find any base hits after the big comeback by Sebeka. Maple Lake went down one, two, three in the bottom of the seventh to end the game 9-11.
   Legion vs. Holdingford
Following a tough loss to Sebeka, it was back to Paynesville for Maple Lake as they took on the team from Holdingford on July 24.
Maple Lake came out swinging in this Saturday match-up with a lead-off home run from Brian Redemske. 
“Redemske had an incredible tournament,” Bergstrom said. “He reached base multiple times in every game and hit another home run later versus Holdingford.”
Derek Rachel added a home run of his own later in the game to give Maple Lake the lead. Meanwhile, Justin Bidwell did a great job of pitching, He threw strikes and kept the Holdingford hitters off balance. 
Holdingford did manage to get runners on base in the seventh inning. A two-run double to the left-center gap tied the game. With a runner on second, the next Holdingford hitter hit a line drive that just tipped the glove of a sprinting Bidwell in centerfield. That brought home the go-ahead run for Holdingford. 
However, Maple Lake had a great opportunity to even the score in the bottom of the seventh inning. Mitch Wurm singled to lead off the inning. Rachel then placed a neat bunt down the first-base line. The pitcher fumbled the ball and could not get Rachel out, but Wurm was thrown out attempting to advance to third base. With one out the next two Irish batters grounded out to end the game, and the season. 
The Maple Lake Legion team finished the 2010 season with an 11-4 record. The team loses only one player to graduation for next season and looks to improve an already talented team.
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