NY Mills to take on BHV in opening round of state
By Chad Koenen
After falling for just the third time all season in the Section 6A winner’s bracket final on Tuesday night, the New York Mills Eagles made three statement wins on Thursday and Friday to defend their section title in commanding fashion.
The Eagles defeated Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa and Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg by a combined score of 36-9 in the three games as they punched their ticket to the state baseball tournament for the third straight year on Friday afternoon. NY Mills has placed second in each of the past two state tournaments (2019 and 2021).
NY Mills (22-3 overall and ranked first in the QRF) received the third seed at the state baseball tournament and will take on unseeded Bertha-Hewitt-Verndale (11-14 overall and 31st in the QRF) in the opening round of the state tournament on Tuesday. The game will be held at Joe Faber Field in St. Cloud with a first pitch scheduled for 6 p.m. NY Mills defeated the Raiders by scores of 6-1 and 5-4 on May 24.
The winner of Tuesday’s game will take on the winner of second seeded Randolph (22-1 overall and ranked fifth in the QRF) and unseeded MACCRAY (15-6 overall and ranked 23rd in the QRF) on Wednesday at 1:30 pm at Joe Faber Field. The state championship game will be held on Friday at Target Field.
On the other side of the bracket, top seeded Hayfield (22-2 overall and ranked second in the QRF) will take on unseeded New Ulm Cathedral (22-3 overall and ranked sixth in the QRF) and fourth seeded Sacred Heart (21-3 overall and third in the QRF) will take on fifth seeded South Ridge (17-7 overall and ranked seventh in the QRF).
NY Mills’ Jonah Johnson and Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg’s Alex Call combined to strike out 23 hitters and gave up just 7 hits as the third and fourth ranked teams in the state squared off at Minnewaska Area High School on Tuesday.
Unfortunately, KMS was able to score 1 run in the second inning and another run in the sixth inning to come away with a 2-0 win over the Eagles.
Call struck out the first nine Eagle hitters in order and retired the first 13 hitters he faced in order before Brayden Ehnert reached base on a single in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Eagles had a chance to crack the scoreboard when Breck Hensch was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second base with just one out. Unfortunately, Call struck out the next two hitters to end the scoring chance for the Eagles.
NY Mills had another scoring opportunity in the bottom of the seventh inning when Bode Roberts led off the inning with a walk. The next hitter grounded out, before Hensch was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second base with one out and the winning run at the plate.
Call retired the next two hitters in order to defeat the Eagles by a score of 2-0 and send NY Mills into the elimination bracket.
AB R H BI
Jacob Guck 3 0 0 0
Bren Salo 2 0 0 0
Jonah Johnson 3 0 0 0
Bode Roberts 2 0 0 0
Brayden Ehnert 3 0 1 0
Breck Hensch 1 0 0 0
Cody Barthel 2 0 0 0
Jon Rinerson 1 0 0 0
Monte Briard 3 0 0 0
Jonah Ruther 2 0 0 0
PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-k)- Jonah Johnson 6-5-2-1-3-8, Jacob Guck 1-1-0-0-0-1
NY Mills forced a winner-take-all championship game for the Section 6A crown with a pair of commanding wins over Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa and KMS on Thursday.
After defeating the Jaguars by a score of 10-4 in the elimination bracket, the Eagles cruised to a 13-2 win over the Saints in the first of two games against KMS.
In their game against the Jaguars, the Eagles overcame a 2-1 deficit following the first inning, by scoring 6 runs in the top of the second inning to leave little doubt about the outcome of the game.
BBE cut the lead to 7-4 in the fifth inning, but the Eagles scored another run in the sixth inning and another in the seventh inning to come away with a 10-4 win. The two teams combined to get 25 hits in the game with the Eagles holding a 15-10 advantage.
Jacob Guck led the way for the Eagles with 4 hits and 3 scored runs, while Jonah Johnson picked up a pair of hits and 3 RBIs. Breck Hensch, Cody Barthel and Monte Briard also picked up a pair of hits in the win.
Guck picked up the win on the mound after giving up 10 hits and just 2 earned runs.
In the second game of the day, NY Mills avenged their loss to KMS in a big way by outhitting the Saints by a 13-4 margin to come away with a 13-2 win.
The Eagles, who were already leading by a score of 3-1, broke the game wide open in the fourth and fifth innings by scoring 4 runs in each inning to take a 11-1 lead heading into the bottom of the fifth. They added 2 more runs in the seventh inning to come away with the 13-2 win.
Jonah Johnson led the charge offensively as the senior was a perfect 4-4 at the plate with 4 doubles and 5 RBIs. The only time Johnson didn’t get a double in the win was when he was walked.
Bren Salo scored 3 runs and had 3 RBIs in the win, while Bode Roberts added 3 RBIs of his own.
Brayden Ehnert needed just 88 pitches to pick up the win on the mound as he gave up just 4 hits and 2 earned runs.
BBE AB R H BI
Jacob Guck 5 3 4 0
Bren Salo 3 1 1 1
Jonah Johnson 4 1 2 3
Bode Roberts 3 0 1 1
Jon Rinerson 0 1 0 0
Brayden Ehnert 4 0 1 0
Breck Hensch 4 2 2 1
Cody Barthel 4 1 2 2
Monte Briard 4 1 2 1
Jonah Ruther 2 0 0 0
HITTING- 2B- Cody Barthel, Breck Hensch; 3B- Cody Barthel, Jonah Johnson
PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-k)- Jacob Guck 7-10-4-2-1-5
KMS AB R H BI
Jacob Guck 4 2 1 1
Bren Salo 3 3 2 3
Jonah Johnson 4 2 4 5
Bode Roberts 5 0 1 3
Brayden Ehnert 3 0 0 0
Jon Rinerson 1 0 0 0
Breck Hensch 4 1 2 0
Cody Barthel 4 0 0 0
Monte Briard 3 2 1 0
Jonah Ruther 4 2 2 1
Dashaun Robinson 0 1 0 0
HITTING- 2B- Jonah Johnson (4), Bren Salo (2)
PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-k)- Brayden Ehnert 7-4-2-2-2-6
With a trip to the state baseball tournament hanging in the balance, the fourth ranked NY Mills Eagles blew past third ranked KMS by a score of 13-3 to advance to their third straight state baseball tournament.
After Cody Barthel retired the Saints in order in the top of the first inning, the Eagles erupted for 6 runs in the bottom half of the first inning thanks to RBI singles by Jonah Johnson and Brayden Ehnert and a 2-run single by Jonah Ruther.
KMS answered with 2 runs in the top of the second inning, but NY Mills put the game out of reach for good in the bottom of the third inning when they scored 7 runs to come away with a 13-3 win and avenge only its third loss of the season just days earlier to KMS. The Eagles outhit the Saints by a 13-4 margin and won by a score of 13-3 in five innings.
Barthel picked up the complete game win by going 5 innings and giving up just 4 hits and 2 earned runs. He walked 6 hitters, but struck out 3 to come away with the win.
Johnson once again had a big game at the plate as he went 3-3 with a triple and 2 runs scored, while Ehnert and Ruther each went 2-3 with 3 RBIs in the win.
KMS AB R H BI
Jacob Guck 3 1 1 2
Bren Salo 3 2 1 0
Jonah Johnson 3 2 3 1
Bode Roberts 3 0 1 2
Brayden Ehnert 3 1 2 3
Breck Hensch 3 1 1 0
Cody Barthel 1 0 1 0
Monte Briard 3 1 1 0
Jonah Ruther 3 1 2 3
Dashaun Robinson 0 2 0 0
Jon Rinerson 0 2 0 0
HITTING- 2B- Monte Briard, Bode Roberts; 3B- Jonah Johnson
PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-k)- Cody Barthel 5-4-3-2-6-3