For Sacred Heart / MACCRAY, Tri-Town and Glenwood-Lowry, Friday begins the opportunity to fight for the Division II State Championship.
Although he failed to earn his place in the tournament, Sacred Heart / MACCRAY is hoping to claim the title at home with an automatic bid due to the tournament being organized by Sacred Heart.
“We were a bit disappointed to lose the last four,” said coach Steve Agre. “But also knowing that we had the opportunity to be an automatic bid may play a small role there, too.”
The Scarlets are scheduled to start the state tournament with La Crescent at 6:30 p.m. Friday. The last time the two teams met in the first round of the State Tournament was in 2012.
Agre is confident that his team can take on any team in the tournament despite entering the tournament with an automatic bid. However, in order to do that, Agre said his team will have to constantly do their best.
“Are we going to win on Friday? To be determined. But I think we have enough talent in our team to compete with anyone on any day, ”he said. “It’s just the question of whether it is that day.”
Agre added, “Yes, we are an automatic offer, but let’s not settle for it. We want to work hard every day, try to improve ourselves and try to earn our place. Obviously that didn’t happen, but I felt we were playing a really good ball here over the last two weeks of the playoffs.
Agre plans to have some light workouts before Friday. The only intention to ensure that his players are in full health and full confidence ahead of his clash against Post 595.
The Scarlet will look to make the most of the moment while also hoping to seize the opportunity for victory. But Agre thinks Friday will prove how much his team want to become state champions of the Legion.
“I think we’re going to be ready to play this week, but we’ll find out on Friday night when we step onto that pitch,” he said. “We know our job is definitely done for us, like when you get to the state tournament. But I have to believe we’re going to have to keep them off the bases so that we pretty much have a chance. ”
For Tri-Town and Glenwood-Lowry, the road to the state tournament was not easy, with both teams having to play extended games to participate in the tournament.
Zach Bagley of Tri-Town returns home on a basics-laden walk by Sacred Heart / MACCRAY in a sub-state playoff game on Tuesday, July 20, 2021 at Kingery Field in Atwater. Matthew Curry / West Central Tribune
Tri-Town lost the Central District Championship opener to Pierz 10-8. The Black Sox then followed him with back-to-back wins to take the best of three series to advance to the State Tournament.
Glenwood-Lowry lost in the first round of the Midwest District tournament 8-6 to Kerkhoven. But they made their way through the consolation bracket with wins over Ashby (9-1) and Kerkhoven (13-1). In the Championship, Glenwood-Lowry beat Granite Falls twice, 7-1 and 4-3 in 10 innings, to clinch their ticket to declare.
For the majority of athletes in Tri-Town, which consists primarily of players from the Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City high school baseball team, this is the second time they’ve competed in the state tournament this year, after have lost in the first round. Class AA playoffs during the school season.
“First of all, it’s a great privilege for our team to go this far. It’s quite an achievement to go to the state both in high school and at the Legion Ball, ”said Tri-Town coach David Kingery. “It really shows what kind of team we have here. The guys are playing really well together and we’ve had some really good competition here in the playoffs.
Despite a seemingly early exit from the State Tournament during the high school season, Kingery believes his squad will be a different and more confident team after experiencing it earlier this year.
“I think most of them have the mental capacity to handle the big stage right now, so I just hope they are able to keep their online humility as we head into this weekend against a very good competition, ”he said.
Kingery said the team’s chemistry and teamwork could be a key factor in getting the team to play for the championship on Sunday.
“We’re not here to make it, we want to win. But it will take a lot of teamwork and effort to beat all these very good teams, ”he said.
“If we play well together as a team, I think we can beat a lot of teams. But I think if we play individually on a baseball field, we really won’t stand a chance against anyone.
Glenwood-Lowry and Tri-Town will face off in the first round of the State Tournament on Friday at noon.
In the remaining matches of the first round, Luverne faces Wadena at 9:30 a.m. and Roseau faces Victoria at 4 p.m.
The championship semi-finals are set for 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, and the D-II Championship will take place at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday.
State champion D-II will compete in the Central Plains Division II regional tournament August 6-8 in Waupun, Wisconsin. Teams from Kansas, Nevada, North Dakota and Wisconsin will also compete in the regional tournament.
All games at the Sacré-Coeur
Luverne vs. Wadena, 9:30 a.m.
Glenwood-Lowry vs. Tri-Town, noon
Roseau c. Victoria, 4 p.m.
La Crescent vs Sacré-Cœur / MACCRAY, 6:30 p.m.
Consolation semi-finals: 9 a.m. / 11:30 p.m.
Consolation Championship: 2 p.m.
Championship semi-finals: 5 p.m. / 7:30 p.m.
Match for third place: 11 a.m.
Championship match: 1:30 p.m.