Section 6A-South baseball: Ashby upends West Central Area, shocks top-seeded Wheaton-Herman/Norcross
Not only did No. 8 seeded Ashby make its way past No. 9 West Central Area in the play-in game of the Section 6A-South baseball playoffs, they then proceeded to knock off top-seeded Wheaton-Herman/Norcross to reach the semifinals.
It was the Arrows’ bats that secured them the berth as Ashby rapped out 12 hits against the Knights in the first game and 10 more against the Warriors in game two.
The first win of the day was sparked by outfielder Gage Olson, who drove in four runs with one swing of the bat, uncorking a grand slam in the second inning.
“The guys took control of the game early, scoring nine runs in the first two innings and never looked back,” said Ashby assistant coach Blaine Barry of the Arrow’s 14-4 five-inning win over West Central Area. “The highlight of the game was Gage Olson’s grand slam. The win was a total team effort with everyone contributing in one way or another.”
Tanner Langlie, Reed Hanson, Riley Mickelson, Olson and Morgan Wing finished the win with a pair of hits each. Blake Ohren and Allard LaRue had one hit each.
Olson notched four RBIs, while Wing added three. Langlie and Hanson also had two runs batted in.
Mickelson picked up the win on the mound, giving up just two hits while striking out eight.
“This was probably Riley’s best pitching performance of the season,” said Barry. “He never lost control and kept the WCA batters guessing all day. It was a fun game to be a part of!”
But it was the second game of the day that really paid off for the Arrows as they shut down Wheaton-Herman/Norcross 10-6, again scoring nine runs in the first two innings.
Olson had his second home run of the day against the Warriors and Mickelson had a big home run as well.
LaRue, Mickelson and Jon Quernemoen each knocked out a pair of hits, while Dylan Barry, Langlie, Olson and Reed Hanson had one apiece.
Barry stepped onto the mound for the Arrows and went four and two-thirds innings, giving up four hits while striking out three and walking four.
“Dylan started on the mound for the Arrows, pitching a strong game and didn’t falter until the fifth inning, when we got into a jam with the bases loaded,” said Barry. “Mickelson came in and pitched the final two and a third innings, getting the save by holding the Warriors scoreless.”
Mickelson struck out four of the eight batters he faced.
The win advanced Ashby to the semifinal game that was played yesterday, Thursday, at Morris. They faced Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley after the Wolverines defeated Hancock 11-3.
SECTION 6A-SOUTH BASEBALL
SEEDINGS – 1. Wheaton-Herman/Norcross, 2. Brandon-Evansville, 3. Ortonville, 4. Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley, 5. Hancock, 6. Parkers Prairie, 7. Eagle Valley, 8. Ashby, 9. West Central Area
TUESDAY, MAY 29
Ashby 14, West Central Area 4
Ashby 10, Wheaton-Herman/Norcross 6
Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley 11, Hancock 3
Eagle Valley 11, Brandon-Evansville 5
Ortonville 8, Parkers Prairie 6
THURSDAY, MAY 31
SEMIFINALS AT MORRIS
Ashby vs. Clinton-GB, 2 p.m.
Eagle Valley vs. Ortonville, 4 p.m.