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Youth baseball: Bemidji's 12-year-old Cal Ripken team advances in region tournament

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sports Bemidji, 56619
Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

BURLINGTON, Colo. -- Bemidji took charge with three runs in the first inning and cruised to an 11-1 victory over Kansas Thursday morning in the elimination round of the 12-year-old Midwest Regional Cal Ripken baseball tournament.

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Vinnie Tesch ripped a two-run double to spark the early onslaught and he added another two-run double in a four-run fourth.

Reid Colley earned the pitching victory, going 3.1 innings. Steven Peterson finished.

The win kept Bemidji’s hopes of capturing the region title alive and at 10 a.m. Friday (CDT) Bemidji will take on Bismarck in the loser’s bracket final. That winner will face unbeaten Grand Forks in the championship series.

Thursday’s game was the lone contest of the day in Burlington as the Kit Carson County Fair opened Thursday and everyone in the community drops what they are doing to either attend or work at the fair.

“Literally, the entire town shuts down for the fair and no one was available to work at the baseball tournament after our game,” said Bemidji coach Bruce Dahlin. “The restaurants, the shops … everything is closed. If we want to eat we go to the fair or we use the vending machines.”

Bismarck did not play Thursday so both teams will be rested for Friday’s game. In the opening round Bismarck handed Bemidji its only loss as the North Dakota champion edged the Minnesota champion 5-3.

“The rest isn’t going to hurt us,” Dahlin said. “It will actually help us stick to our pitching rotation. But offensively we were on a roll and, hopefully, we can keep that up Friday.”

In Thursday’s triumph Bemidji pounded 10 hits and leading the charge was Tesch who had a pair of doubles, a single and five RBIs.

Troy Jarvi singled to begin the first-inning rally and doubles by Casey McNamara and Tesch combined for the first two runs. After Colley walked, a passed ball plated Tesch for the third run.

An error on a ball hit by Reese Dreyer opened the door for four runs in the second inning. Chase Fillippi followed with a bunt single and both runners scored courtesy of Jarvi’s double. Singles by McNamara and Tesch plated the final two runs of the stanza.

Bemidji ended the game via the 10-run rule with four in the fourth, an inning which featured Tesch’s two-run double and Peter Moen’s walk-off two-run single.

McNamara finished with a double and a single and Jarvi contributed a pair of singles.

“We have played Bismarck before and there are no secrets between us,” Dahlin said. “We’ll probably have Colby Carlson on the mound and if we hit, pitch and play defense we will win.”

Thursday’s Game

Kansas 000 1 - 1 3 2

Bemidji 340 4 - 11 10 3

Schneider (L), Stein (2) and Rich. K-2, BB-5

Colley (W), Peterson (4) and McNamara. K-5, BB-1

Wednesday’s Results

Winner’s Bracket

Grand Forks 7, Missouri 6

Bismarck 15, Missouri II 0

Grand Forks 6, Bismarck 5

Loser’s Bracket

Kansas 12, Missouri 11

Bemidji 17, Missouri II 0

Thursday’s Result

Bemidji 11, Kansas 1

Friday’s Games

Game 1: Bemidji vs. Bismarck, 10 a.m. (loser eliminated)

Game 2: Grand Forks vs. Game 1 winner, noon

Saturday’s Game

Game 3: Repeat of Game 2, 10 a.m. (if necessary)

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