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Hunter Arnold connects for one of his three hits during Urbank-Parkers Prairie’s win over Osakis on Sunday afternoon in the Resorters West playoffs. Arnold had a home run and a double in the game and helped the Bombers secure a spot in the Region 16C Tournament. (Blaze Fugina/Echo Press)

Bombers wrap up Region 16C bid

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Bombers wrap up Region 16C bid
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P.O. Box 549
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Urbank-Parkers Prairie became the first Resorters West baseball team to qualify for the Region 16C tournament with a 5-2 victory on Sunday over Osakis.

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The victory in the Resorters West tournament semifinals also gave the Bombers a spot in the tournament’s title game next weekend against either Brandon-Evansville or Osakis.

The winner of that Osakis versus Brandon-Evansville game will also gain the second qualifying spot for the Region 16C tournament.

Now that the Bombers have qualified for regions, they are hoping to position themselves well by earning a bye in the opening round. They will get that if they can wrap up the West tournament championship this weekend with one more win.

“Now that we’re pretty much a shoo-in for the number one seed, we’re going to have a bye in the first round, so we’re looking pretty good,” said Casey Kowalski, who picked up a complete game victory on the mound Sunday. “Two wins and we’re in state, so that’s what we’re playing for.”

The Hawks managed to take an early 2-0 lead against the Bombers in the fourth inning Sunday, but Kowalski continued to feel stronger on the mound as the game continued. Colter Fortenberry picked up an RBI in the two-run fourth inning on a fielder’s choice, and Corey Collins also picked up an RBI on a single.

Kowalski ended up striking out 11 and allowing only the two earned runs over nine innings.

The Bombers had contemplated sending in a relief pitcher for Kowalski in the middle innings Sunday, but he told them he wanted to finish the game out.

“I was getting a little stiff in the middle innings and they wanted to get a new guy in there,” Kowalski said. “I just said I want to take the ball and take control. The last few innings I felt real strong and just threw strikes.”

The Urbank-Parkers Prairie number nine hitter Hunter Arnold led the Bombers’ comeback on Sunday. He ended up going 3-for-3 in the game with a double, a home run and three RBIs. Arnold said he felt confident heading to the plate with some good hitters in front of him in the lineup.

“I’m super confident, knowing we have got hitters all around me, too,” Arnold said. “I’m still batting in the nine hole, it doesn’t bother me at all.”

The Bombers struck back in the bottom of the fifth inning to grab its first lead of the game 3-2. Arnold drove in two RBIs on a double, and he later scored on a sacrifice fly by Connor Kerr.

Urbank-Parkers Prairie then added two insurance runs in the seventh inning on the Arnold home run and an RBI single by Joe Snaza.

The Hawks felt they played well enough to win despite ending up on the losing side on Sunday. The Bombers ended a few of the Hawks’ rallies on nice defensive plays, which could have been the difference in the game.

“I thought we played well,” Chad Zimmel said. “They made a lot of nice plays, they made some web gems. One inning they had three (plays) to stop us from scoring there.”

Although Urbank-Parkers Prairie was the regular season Resorters West champions, the Hawks felt confident about their chances against them heading into Sunday’s game. The two teams each won a game in their two regular season matchups, and Osakis will be ready if they have a rematch with the Bombers in the tournament championship.

“We split with them in the regular season and played them tough here again,” Zimmel said. “We can play with them; we’re not scared of that.”

The Bombers are playing good baseball and know that needs to continue as they focus on each game as it comes.

“We all have some pretty big expectations, but we try to play it one game at a time,” Arnold said. “That’s our focus right now.”

HAWKS 13, BLUEDOGS 4

After starting the Resorters West tournament with a 10-1 victory over Kensington, Osakis cruised through the second round against Brandon-Evansville with a 14-3 victory.

Matt Laven picked up the complete game victory against Kensington, and Derek Waldvogel followed that with another complete game victory on the mound against Brandon-Evansville.

Ky Zimmel and Ben Anderson led the Osakis offense by scoring three runs each against Brandon-Evansville. Ky Zimmel went 2-for-2 with a double at the plate and was also hit by a pitch and walked. Anderson went 2-for-4 with a triple.

GAME RESULTS

OSAKIS 000 200 000 – 2 6 0

URBANK-PP 000 030 20x – 5 9 2

OSAKIS PITCHING – Devin Waldvogel – L, 6 2/3IP, 5R, 1SO, 2BB, 8H; Drew Fearing 1 1/3 IP, 0R, 1H, 1BB, 0R, 1SO

URBANK-PP PITCHING – Casey Kowalski – W, 9IP, 2R, 11SO, 6H, 2BB

OSAKIS OFFENSE – Lane Berberich – 3-5, 2B; Ky Zimmel – 0-3, BB; Drew Fearing – 0-4; Ben Anderson – 0-3, run, HBP; Chad Zimmel – 1-4; Colter Fortenberry – 0-4, run, RBI; Corey Collins – 2-3, BB, RBI; Derek Waldvogel – 0-4; Brandon Giesler – 0-4

URBANK-PP OFFENSE – Jered Freudenberg – 1-3, run, BB; Connor Kerr – 1-4, RBI; Joe Snaza – 3-4, 3B, RBI; Michael Lorine – 0-4; Jamie Thoennes – 0-4; Casey Kowalski – 0-3, run, BB; Eli Gesell – 0-3, BB; Trey Thompson – 1-4, run, 2B; Hunter Arnold – 3-3, 2 runs, 2B, HR, 3 RBIs

OSAKIS 100 040 305 – 12 16 0

B-E 001 002 001 – 4 8 1

OSAKIS PITCHING – Derek Waldvogel – W, 9IP, 8H, 4R, 7SO, 9BB

OSAKIS OFFENSE – Lane Berberich – 0-4, BB, run; Ky Zimmel – 2-2, 2B, SAC, HBP, BB, 3 runs; Drew Fearing – 3-6, 3B, 2 runs; Ben Anderson – 2-4, 3B, B, 3 runs; Chad Zimmel – 0-5; Colter Fortenberry – 3-4, BB, run; Cory Collins – 0-4, BB, run; Derek Waldvogel – 2-5, run; Brandon Giesler – 4-5, run

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Blaze Fugina
Blaze Fugina is the sports editor at the Pierce County Herald. Before working at the Herald, Blaze was a sports reporter at the Alexandria Echo Press for one year and 10 months. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in May of 2011. You can follow Blaze on Twitter at @BlazeFugina.
(715) 273-4334
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