MG Legion runner-up at 20-team Lakeview Classic

A strong field converged on Duluth for the 2013 Lakeview Classic June 29 to July 1. Post 172 represented Maple Grove well by taking second place.

Maple Grove opened play with a 18-3 win over Andover. Erick Kivi threw three innings of no hit ball in relief to earn the win. The Crimson collected 14 walks and 9 hits in the five inning win. Nate Erickson and Blake Whitecotton each collected two hits and three RBI`s to lead the offense.

The Maple Grove Legion baseball team celebrates its second-place showing at the 20-team Lakeview Classic.
The Maple Grove Legion baseball team celebrates its second-place showing at the 20-team Lakeview Classic.

In game two Maple Grove defeated Lakeview of Duluth 6-2. Riley Byland threw a no hitter to improve his record to 3-1. Joe Franta, Ben Osborn, Erickson and Jack Keubelbeck each collected two hits to lead the offense.

Ashland, Wisc., was no match for Post 172 in game three. Mike Wallace pitched a complete-game shutout to pick up the win in a 10-0  decision. Franta, Osborn and Austin Bies each collected two hits.

Post 172 advanced into the quarterfinals and defeated Thunder Bay, Ontario, 4-3 with a dramatic seventh-inning comeback. In the seventh Erickson blasted a 355-foot double off the top of the fence to start the rally. Whitecotton followed with a line drive triple over the centerfielder’s head. The throw into third deflected off of the sliding Whitecotton and into the third base dugout allowing the winning run to trot home.

Brady Meyer threw a 1,2,3 seventh inning to finish a complete game win. Meyer struck out six and scattered six hits to put M.G. into the semifinals.

Historic Wade Stadium was the venue for The semifinals and championship games. Lakeville North proved to be another tough opponent for Post 172.

Lakeville North led into the bottom of the seventh. This set the stage for yet another Maple Grove rally. Post 172 scored three runs with Erickson drilling a bases loaded walk-off single sending M.G. into the championship game.

M.G. faced rival Wayzata for the championship. Post 172 came out on the short end of a 3-0 score. Tyler Field threw a complete game allowing no earned runs against a strong Wayzata line up.

The Crimson are a host site for The Gopher Classic July 12-14. The Gopher Classic is the largest American Legion Tournament in the country. Teams from all over The United States and Canada participate in the 72-team event.