VFW Red: Alexandria splits in Swedberg Wood Products tournament
The Alexandria VFW Red split two games with White Bear Lake over the weekend at the Swedberg Wood Products Tournament after sweeping a doubleheader with New London-Spicer earlier in the week.
Alexandria bounced back nicely after a 3-2 loss to White Bear Lake on Saturday to beat them 6-1 on Sunday. The tournament was shortened due to Cold Spring and Delano having to pull out because of the state tournament.
That left White Bear Lake as the only other team in the tournament besides the two Alexandria teams.
White Bear Lake 1
The Red played a polished game on Sunday, backed by timely hitting and a solid outing on the mound by Beau Backhaus.
Alexandria scored early after Jeff Swedberg doubled, stole third and then came in on a Nick Knoblach sacrifice fly. That gave Backhaus some room to work with, and he ran with it. The righthander gave up one run in six innings, scattering six hits and three walks, while striking out three.
White Bears lone run came in the fourth inning after Alexandria had built a 2-0 lead. The Red responded with a run of their own in the bottom of the inning and two more in the sixth to stretch their lead out. Matt Pilgrim relieved Backhaus in the seventh and retired the side in order to secure the win.
White Bear Lake 3,
Alexandria got another strong pitching performance on Saturday but could not get the bats going in the 3-2 loss against the Bears.
The Red were no-hit through four innings before breaking through in the fifth. Zach Carlson, Swedberg, Grant Becker and Ben Allen bunched together four straight singles with two outs to make it a 3-2 game heading into the late innings. Alexandria was held hitless through the final two innings again, though, as White Bear held on for the narrow win.
That spoiled a strong start by Knoblach. He scattered nine hits and two walks, while striking out one. He settled down after the first three innings and allowed no runs and three hits through the final four.
New London-Spicer 2
Things came a little easier last Friday night in a doubleheader with New London-Spicer.
Alexandria controlled the nightcap behind a strong offensive performance. The Red broke out for four runs in the second inning and scored two more in the third and fourth to break the game open. Backhaus led the charge with two hits. Swedberg scored the final run on a triple in the fourth before advancing home on the play after an error at third.
That was plenty of offense for starter Zach Carlson to work with. He went four innings, allowing two runs on four hits and three walks. He struck out four. Allen worked the fifth, allowing just one walk and striking out two.
New London-Spicer 1
It was a similar story in the opener last Friday night.
The Alexandria offense broke out for five runs in the first inning as the Red cruised to the 8-1 win.
All five runs scored with two outs and they came with a hit in the inning. Knoblach started things with a walk. Three more walks, a hit batter and two errors followed before New London recorded the final out when the 10th batter came to the plate for Alexandria.
Pilgrim used that to his advantage. He allowed just two hits and two walks in three innings. He struck out two before Chase Duwenhoegger relieved him in the fourth and threw the final three innings. He allowed just one run on two hits.
The Red will be back in action today with a doubleheader against Brainerd starting at 11 a.m.
Alexandria 6, White Bear Lake 1
ALEXANDRIA PITCHING – Beau Backhaus – W, 6IP, 5H, 1R, 1ER, 3BB, 3SO; Matt Pilgrim – 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0ER, 0BB, 1SO
ALEXANDRIA HITTING – Ben Allen – 1-2, 2 runs, 2BB; Jeff Swedberg – 2-3, 1 run, 2B; Nick Knoblach – 2-3, 1 run, 2B, RBI; Craig Campbell – 2-3; Chase Duwenhoegger – BB, 1 run; Backhaus – BB; Gabe Grimstad – 1-2
White Bear Lake 3, Alexandria 2
ALEXANDRIA PITCHING – Knoblach – 7IP, 9H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 1SO
ALEXANDRIA HITTING – Allen – 1-3, RBI; Backhaus – BB; Carlson – 1-3, 1 run; Swedberg – 1-3, 1 run; Becker – 1-2, RBI, BB
Alexandria 8, New London-Spicer 2
ALEXANDRIA PITCHING – Carlson – 4IP, 4H, 2R, 2ER, 3BB, 4SO; Allen – 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0ER, 1BB, 2SO
ALEXANDRIA HITTING – Chris Christian – 1-3, 2B, 1 run; Backhaus – 2-3, 1 run; Duwenhoegger – 2-3; Carlson – 1-3, 1 run; Swedberg – 1-2, 3B, 1 run, BB; Tom Schmidt – BB, 1 run; Allen – 1-2, 1 run; Grimstad – 1-1, 1 run; Knoblach – 1-1, 1 run, BB
Alexandria 8, New London-Spicer 1
ALEXANDRIA PITCHING – Pilgrim – 3IP, 2H, 0R, 0ER, 2BB, 2SO; Duwenhoegger – 3IP, 2H, 1R, 1ER, 0BB, 0SO
ALEXANDRIA HITTING – Knoblach – 2-3, 1 run; Craig Campbell – BB, 1 run; Grant Becker – 1-3, 2B, 2 RBI, 1 run; Leary – 2BB, 1 run; Backhaus – 2-3, 2 runs, RBI, BB; Grimstad – 1-2, BB; Chris Anderson – 1-2, 1 run, 2 RBI