Valley City Merchants Win Softball Title


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CITY  (–The Valley City Merchants won the men’s slow pitch softball Division III (Class D) State Tournament this past weekend in Fargo.

The Merchants went 5-0 and allowed only six runs in the tournament to win the state title. They opened their first game on Saturday by defeating Industrial Electric of Dickinson 10-0, and they followed that with a 12-0 win over the Kensal Merchants.

In their final game on Saturday the Merchants defeated Zimney Oil Field Services of Minot 5-1. In the semi-final game on Sunday, the Merchants topped a Liquid Ice/Ken Kraft Agency team out of Fargo that came in averaging 21 runs per game, 10-0. In the state championship game, the Merchants defeated Schiele Enterprises of Fargo, 15-5.

Members of the Valley City Merchants softball team include (back row, l-r) Tony Gordon, Jordyn Heck, Jason Beilke, Matt Klabo, Jay Kocka, Chad Lueck, Ryan Leroux, (front row, l-r) Tom Glandt, Pat Bresnahan, Jeremy Wolff, Justin Thornton, LC Kjelland, Danny Swenson, James Thornton, Aaron Bietz. (photo submitted)


Chad Lueck led the team in batting, finishing 11-15 with two home runs in the tournament. James Thornton added three home runs, and Jason Beilke and Matt Klabo also homered for Valley City.

The Merchants also won the Class D Coors Light Early Bird Tournament in Fargo earlier this year and were league champions with a 25-2 record. They would like to thank the local businesses who helped sponsor the team this year including the NuBar, Wendel Auto Body, Agri-Cover, Finley Elevator, Dakota Silver, Brothers III, Leevers Super Valu, and Xtreme Printing.

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