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Section 3AA baseball: Luverne falls to NL-S in section title game

GRANITE FALLS -- After it defeated New London-Spicer 3-2 to force a second game in the Section 3AA baseball championship on Thursday in Granite Falls, Luverne had the Wildcats on the ropes with a lead in the sixth, until the long road through the...

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The Luverne baseball team walks back to the bench after shaking hands with New London-Spicer in the Cardinals' loss in the Section 3AA championship game on Thursday in Granite Falls. (Adam Watts / The Globe)

GRANITE FALLS -- After it defeated New London-Spicer 3-2 to force a second game in the Section 3AA baseball championship on Thursday in Granite Falls, Luverne had the Wildcats on the ropes with a lead in the sixth, until the long road through the loser’s bracket caught up with them.

Already without their top two pitchers, Tyler Reisdorfer -- who was ineligible to pitch after pitching in the loser’s bracket final on Thursday -- and Ben Serie -- who won the first game on the mound -- the Cardinals’ Derek Lundgren hit his pitch limit late in Game 2. And the Wildcats took advantage, quickly turning a 3-1 Cardinals lead into a 7-3 Wildcats lead.

“Derek threw a good ballgame for us and then we went with Declan -- Declan has pitched some for us,” Luverne head coach Mike Wenninger said. “Declan pitched a good sixth for us, but he got into some trouble in the seventh and we had some other guys throw too.”

The first seven batters reached and scored for NL-S in the seventh. John Perkins, Will Roguske, Wyatt White, Josh Soine, Ethan Haugen, Derek Dolezal, and matt Spaulding all came in.

The Cardinals had built up the lead with a three-run first inning in which Jaxon Nelson hit a two-run homer, driving in Declan Beers. And Gaige Nath drove in Reisdorfer.

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“We started out hot, we had a double and then a home run,” Wenninger said. “We scored three in the first and then I think we just put it on cruise control and stopped. We needed to keep scoring.”

Nelson was 1-for-2 in the game with the homer and was hit by two pitches, while Nath was 2-for-2 with two singles a walk and an RBI, and Beers was 2-for-4 with two doubles, a run and reached on an error.

The first game, the Cardinals found themselves in a 2-0 hole in the third inning, when Perkins and White each scored. But Luverne came back, sealing the win with a three-run fifth. Lundgren led the inning off with a double, Mark Sterrett walked and then Declan Beers drove them both in with a two-out triple. Beers scored on a passed ball.

“That seems to be our mantra today -- score three in an inning,” Wenninger said. “We scored our three and then we were done there too.”

Related Topics: BASEBALL
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