Lourdes baseball falls in State Tournament opener

July 12, 2017 05:29 PM

(ABC 6 News) – Nine days after completing a thrilling double-header sweep over the La Crescent Lancers in the 2017 Section 1AA Championship, the Rochester Lourdes Eagles fell short in their following game on the baseball diamond.

The Eagles, the no.5 seed in the Class AA state baseball tournament, fell to the no.4 seed Maple Lake Irish on Thursday, 11-1, in six innings at Dick Putz Field in St. Cloud.


The Irish, who were the home team, started fast in the batter’s box, as Ben Reilley’s two-run triple with two-outs helped put Maple Lake ahead early—and what later proved to be for good.

The Irish led the Eagles 3-0 after the first inning before Lourdes’ Matt Hayford’s fielder’s choice in the top of the second inning brought Logan Olson in to score to make it a 3-1 game. With only one out in the frame though, the Eagles couldn’t add any more runs, as Maple Lake was able to register a strikeout before catching Hayford attempting to steal second base to end the Eagles’ threat.

The Eagles weren’t able to muster any hits against Irish pitcher Hunter Malachek. Malachek pitched six innings and struck out seven batters on the mound.

Following the second inning, the Malachek and the Irish stormed ahead to a 10-1 lead—at the plate, Malachek finished with three hits, scored three runs, and drove in three runs off of a three-run homer in the second.

In the 6th inning, Maple Lake’s Cole Trager registered an RBI double, forcing the high school 10-run rule to come into effect, and ending the game.

"You just have to tip your hat, (Malachek) kept us off-balance,” Eagles head coach Dan Herold said. “They hit the heck out of the ball against some of our best. We're just going to tip our hats to them."

This was the Eagles’ second trip to the Class AA state tournament in the last three years. “It's always magical when you make it to the state tournament,” Herold said. “To be the top eight of 118 teams in our Class, it's quite an honor, and there's no bad teams up here to beat up a little bit, you just don’t want to be team number eight.”

The Eagles are now 20-7 overall this season. They’ll continue play in the consolation bracket on Friday at Joe Faber Field in St. Cloud.


Sean Tehan

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