Alexandria repeats as Sub State 14 champions in a blowout
PERHAM — Alexandria took any air of uncertainty out of Perham’s Tuffy’s Stadium quickly Sunday afternoon and ended the game two innings early in a hitting barrage.
Toby Helgeson blasted a grand slam to highlight an eight-run second inning as the defending champions won their fourth straight game of the tournament defeating the Moorhead Blues 19-3 to claim the American Legion Sub State 14 championship.
“We just flat-out hit the ball all over the park,” said Head Coach Jake Munsch. “I could tell our guys were ready to play. We came here and took care of business today.”
In the first two innings of play, seven Alexandria batters recorded at least one RBI and Alexandria led 11-0. Moorhead’s starting pitcher Derek Jorgenson lasted a brutish 1 ⅓ innings.
“I don’t want anyone to take anything away from Moorhead; that pitcher we faced shut us out last time we faced him,” Munsch said.
Alexandria came out hitting the ball hard scoring three times in the first inning on singles by Mitch Thompson and Blake Stockert. Helgeson added a double and scored on Thompson’s hit. Travis Krueger also doubled scoring Thompson and he scored on Stockert’s single for a 3-0 lead.
Rain delayed the game for 16 minutes in the third inning.
Stockert walked and scored on a 4-6-3 double play in the fourth inning to push across the 12th Alexandria run.
Drew Anderson got Moorhead on the scoreboard with a RBI double in the fourth inning to score Jason England who reached on perfect bunt down the third base line to start the inning. Alexandria starter Danny Kuhn got out of the inning fanning three Blues looking.
The home plate umpire enforced two balk calls in the fourth, one on each team, both of which rattled the pitchers on the mound.
England moved to third base on the balk called on Kuhn and scored easily on Anderson’s double. Kuhn’s first pitch after the call was in the left-handed batter’s box.
The second balk call preceded a wild pitch that Mitch Thompson trotted home on after taking third on the balk to make the score 13-1.
Alexandria continued to pour on the offense knocking reliever Austin Skjefte out in the sixth inning after scoring five more runs to increase the lead to 19-1.
Schroeder hit a two-run homer with England aboard in the bottom of the sixth for Moorhead.
All nine Alexandria starters recorded at least one hit. Stockert hit the ball hard all tournament. Sunday, he was 3-3 with two singles, a walk, a two-run homer and four RBIs. Helgeson finished 2-5 with four RBIs. Kris Setterstrom had three singles and one RBI.
Kuhn pitched a complete game for the victory, fanning six, hitting two, allowing seven hits and three earned runs.
Alexandria will play Friday, August 1 at 1 p.m. in Burnsville against the winner of Sub State 6 in the first round of the Minnesota American Legion State tournament.
“We want to go down there and win a couple of ballgames,” said Munsch. “Realistically, do we want to win it? Sure, we do, but from here on out every win is a bonus for us.”
ALX 380 125 0 — 19 19 1
MHD 000 102 0 — 3 7 4
ALX: Kuhn (WP) and Thompson
MHD: Jorgenson (LP), Skjefte, Anderson and Oberg