The Parkers Prairie baseball team has been one of the toughest teams to beat come Section 6A Tournament time the last handful of years.

The Panthers were eager to try to replicate some of that playoff magic that sent them to three straight state tournaments from 2016-2018. That streak was broken last year as the Panthers finished 13-12 overall, but they still won four games in the postseason. Parkers Prairie made it to within a game of the 6A championship round before falling in a 2-0 game to eventual section champion, New York Mills. The Panthers were excited to see what this season would hold on a team centered around seniors Alex Koep, Josh Helling, Jack Marquardt, Eric Klimek, Dominic Doble, Austin Ruckheim, Lance Smith, Lucas Kies and Preston Yohnke.

With the season being canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Echo Press reached out to each of the Parkers Prairie seniors as a way to recognize them. This story centers around four questions for the players who responded: Why do they play baseball? What do they miss most about it this spring? What is a favorite memory from competing? What are their future plans after high school, and do they plan on competing again?

Lucas Kies

Lucas Kies
Lucas Kies

Why he plays: I've been playing baseball like my whole life, so the reason I play is because I love the game.

What he misses most: Making memories with my teammates and having fun on the field.

Favorite memory: The state baseball tournament.

Future plans: I plan to attend (the North Dakota State College of Science) and I might play some baseball there. I'm not 100% sure yet.

Josh Helling

Josh Helling
Josh Helling

Why he plays: Baseball was always my favorite sport, and I just love to play and have fun with all of my friends and teammates.

What he misses most: Playing with my teammates and having fun together.

Favorite memory: Going to state my sophomore year.

Future plans: I’m planning on going to Bethel in the fall and playing football and baseball there.