VALLEY CITY (NewsDakota.com)–A late rally propelled Enderlin in the consolation round, while Valley City had a rally end short in the semifinals during the second round of the Leevers Classic American Legion baseball tournament in Valley City Saturday.
Enderlin rebounded from an opening round loss to Thompson earlier in the day with a four-run rally in the bottom of the sixth to top Grafton 7-3, sending Enderlin to the fifth-place game Sunday.
The game was tied 3-3 after Enderlin tallied three in the first, then saw Grafton bring in a run in the second and two in the third. For the second straight day, the young Grafton team, with three legion reserves and Babe Ruth players, hung with a full legion team, as Grafton’s regulars play in East Grand Forks this weekend.
But the game got away from Grafton starter Hunter Baldwin, who allowed a hit and a pair of walks to start the sixth before being lifted. Reliever Zak Hernandez walked in the go-ahead run, then allowed back-to-back singles to Tanner Groth and Dan Lindgren, hits that plated three more.
Coltin Huus, who was chased after two-thirds of an inning and took the loss against Thompson earlier Saturday, won in relief, working two innings and stranding the bases loaded with Grafton runners in the seventh for the win.
Daulton Bartholomay threw five solid innings in the start for Enderlin, allowing three runs on six hits, striking out five. Gareth Hanson was 2-3 with a single, a double, and two runs scored.
Enderlin will face the Fargo Metro Expos for fifth place Sunday, after the Expos topped Washburn 13-3 in the first consolation game.
Valley City tried to rally late, as Enderlin did, in an attempt to steal a semifinal contest, but came up short, losing to Thompson 5-2 in the day’s finale.
Thompson starter Connor Weber no-hit Valley City through four innings, and seven more errors by the Valley City defense gave Thompson what they needed for the win. Valley City committed nine errors in a win over Grafton Friday night.
First-inning doubles by Jared Syrstad and Andy Naas, along with a Valley City error put Thompson up 2-0 in the first. Brandon Walsh doubled and scored on Malek Larimer’s single in the second, and a hit batsman and error in the fourth pushed the lead to 4-0 in the fifth.
Jaden Keys would lead off Valley City’s sixth with a double, later scoring on Josh Magnuson’s double, cutting the lead to 4-1 in the sixth. But two more errors by Valley City allowed a Thompson run without the benefit of a hit in the seventh, building the lead back to four at 5-1.
After the first two hitters in Valley City’s seventh went down in order, Brett Kohn singled with two strikes in his only at-bat of the day. Keys then singled, and Magnuson plated Kohn with a single, cutting the lead to 5-2 and bringing the tying run to the plate with Chase Carpenter. But Carpenter forced Magnuson with a grounder to short, ending the threat.
Weber earned the win, tossing seven innings, allowing two runs on seven hits, striking out 10. Carpenter took the loss, allowing just six hits and three earned runs, hitting three batters and walking two.
Thompson will face LaMoure in the title game Sunday. Valley City takes on Kindred for third place, after LaMoure topped Kindred 13-3 in the earlier semifinal.
Enderlin’s matchup will start at 12:00 p.m., with Valley City’s game to follow. Both will be aired on Q101 KQDJ-FM.
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