Senior Babe Ruth: Aces sweep three games in Eau Claire
The Rosemount Senior Babe Ruth baseball team is hitting its stride just in time for the start of the district tournament, which gets under way tonight at Alimagnet Park in Burnsville.
The Aces used solid hitting, pitching and defense to go 3-0 in a three-team tournament last weekend in Eau Claire. They took a 10-5 record into Monday's regular season finale at Eastview.
"I think we played a good weekend of baseball at the right time. Hopefully we can perform as well at the district tournament and move on to state," Rosemount coach Steve Lufkin said.
The Aces advanced to state in their first season as a Senior Babe Ruth League team last summer. They will have to advance past Elko, Apple Valley and Faribault in the four-team district to make a return trip in Year 2.
Chris Leske got Rosemount off to a good start Saturday at Eau Claire by throwing a complete-game two-hitter in a 13-0 blanking of Southwood County. He struck out 10 and walked two.
"He kept their hitters off balance with a nice fastball and threw some curveballs and change-ups in there," Lufkin said. "They got a hit to lead off the game and a hit to start the second and that was it."
The Aces gave Lufkin plenty of support with eight runs in the third inning. They batted around for a second straight inning when they pushed across five more runs in the fourth.
Luke Cassell led the team with three hits and Connor Wolf, Reese Richards, Joe Waite, Blake Reinhardt and Kyle Breitinger each added two.
"I think we're pretty consistent all the way down the lineup and on any given day people come in who can hit," Lufkin said.
The Aces trailed 2-0 in Game 2 Saturday against Eau Claire before rallying for two in the fifth and two more in the eighth to earn a 4-2 victory.
Zach Zaboj led off the eighth by drawing a walk and Reinhardt drew another free pass before Ryan Green came through with a two-run single.
Joe Waite tied the game in the fifth with a two-run single of his own.
Waite started on the mound, but left after an inning with a blister. Mitch Olson came on in relief and allowed one run over the final seven innings to get the win.
Rosemount capped off their trip across the border with another shutout of Southwood County. Isaiah Lufkin went all six innings and scattered three hits in an 8-0 win.
Breitinger paced the offense with three hits and Green added two.