Mudcats rout in regional playoffs
It took nearly 20 hours but the Bemidji Mudcats advanced through the opening round of the Region 6B playoffs Saturday, routing Nashwauk 11-1 at Grand Rapids in a match up of Arrowhead League rivals.
They moved to a Saturday night game with the Duluth Express.
Other first round games found newcomer Blaine shading Grand Rapids 2-1 while Hibbing upended Duluth 6-2 in the winners bracket.
Nashwauk and Grand Rapids met late Saturday in the first loser-out game.
Bemidji and Duluth played the second with Blaine and Hibbing finishing the long evening.
The Cats and Nashwauk began their contest Friday but saw it rained out in the second inning.,
It was resumed Saturday afternoon with the Mudcats quickly overcoming a brief 1-0 deficit with three run outbursts in the third and fourth and brought the game to a quick end with four in the seventh.
Tyler Norland and Paul Fenner combined on a six hitter.
Joe Caliguiri worked into the seventh for the Colts to take the loss.
Dan Bauer was moved up to start the Duluth game.
If the Cats win, they will battle the Blaine-Hibbing winner today at 1 at Hibbing, If they lost, they would face a drastically revamped schedule.
When play resumed Saturday Sam Anderson sent Bemidji into a lead it never relinquished belting a three-run home run in the last of the third for a 3-1 lead.
Three more scored in the fourth when Andrew Hengel singled and stole second., John Grindeland cashed him with a double.
Neil Huewe scored Grindeland with a single and Bauer crossed on a wild pitch.
It became 7-1 in the sixth when Grindeland doubled, Bauer singled and Grindeland crossed as Huewe forced Bauer at second.
Grindeland had three hits including a pair of doubles. Huewe and Bauer had two hits with Huewe driving home four runs. Anderson's home run knocked in three.
Joe Badavinac had three Colts hits. Vince Gangl had two.
The win lifted the Mudcats to 25-7-1 on the season.
Nashwauk 010-000-0--- 0-- 6--0
Caliguiri (L), Diorio (7) ad Badavinac
Norland, Fenner (7-1) (3) and Klaers