Osseo Legion 9 closes another successful season

The Osseo Legion baseball team sponsored by the Osseo Legion Post 172 has wrapped up its summer season with many highlights. With 10 players slated to play college baseball in 2012-13, the team ends a successful season with lots of baseball in their future.

The Osseo Legion baseball team was coached by (left to right) Head Coach Case Paxton, and assistant coaches Brett Christofferson and Kean Paxton. (Submitted photo)

The Osseo Legion baseball team was coached by (left to right) Head Coach Case Paxton, and assistant coaches Brett Christofferson and Kean Paxton. (Submitted photo)

In league play, Osseo posted victories over strong division foes. The locals defeated Maple Grove 3-0 in their only meeting of the season. This was a battle of pitchers, with Osseo’s Ben Johnson coming out on top allowing just one hit and posting five strikeouts in the win. Shay Torgerson tried to keep Maple Grove in the game with seven strikeouts, but allowed five hits. Ryan Gangestad sparked Osseo’s attack with two doubles.

Osseo then defeated Centennial 4-0, another top team in their division. Jordan Stroh pitched the shutout victory, allowing just one hit and no walks. For the Orioles, Sam Christofferson had two of the four hits off Centennial ace pitcher Steve Piette. Osseo’s defense, committing only one error, helped Stroh shut down Centennial as he faced 23 batters in seven innings.

The Legion boys then went 3-2 in pool play in the Jim Hanus Gopher Classic. Losing to Napoleon, Ohio, by the score of 3-2 Friday night, they came back to beat Rochester 12-1 in five innings the next morning. Apple Valley pitching proved to be too strong and Osseo suffered a 3-0 loss Saturday afternoon.

Osseo's third baseman Shay Molitor throws out a runner in a recent game. Molitor led Osseo in hitting this summer. (Photo by Rich Moll)

Osseo’s third baseman Shay Molitor throws out a runner in a recent game. Molitor led Osseo in hitting this summer. (Photo by Rich Moll)

Sunday was a different story as Osseo beat Omaha, Neb., 3-0 with strong pitching from Shea Molitor, who primarily plays third base. Right fielder Alex Eernisse was asked to pitch the next game and with help from shortstop/second baseman Bret Moody as the closer, the locals beat Detroit Lakes 8-0 in five innings.

Hitting leaders for the tournament included Tony Stein with four singles and a double and going 5 for 9; Stroh hitting five singles and a double and going 7 for 14; and Tyler Lursen with four singles, two doubles and batting 6 for 12.

Excellent defensive play by center fielder Bryce Sealock also helped the Osseo Legion squad, allowing only seven runs in five games and scoring 25 runs in the largest Legion Baseball tournament in the United States.

In the Wayzata Classic, Edina avenged an earlier loss in the Delano Invitational by beating Osseo 5-3. The boys came back with a 21-3 win over Mound and a close loss to Andover.

In the final tournament game, outfielder Troy Kray played seven positions without errors and center fielder Bryce Sealock pitched in with first base duties.

Entering post-season play, the Legion squad was seeded fourth and slated to play two strong opponents in Delano and Coon Rapids, winner of the Gopher Classic.

Delano also avenged a close loss from their host tournament by beating the Osseo Legion 4-3. Coon Rapids proved to have more pitching and offense. After a first inning solo homerun by Molitor, the Cardinals scored eight runs, beating the Orioles and putting the end to another fun and busy 2012.

Molitor led the locals in hitting during the season with a .542 batting average, Bret Moody posted a team-high 20 RBI’s, and Johnson led the pitching staff with 52 strikeouts and a 1.53 ERA.

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