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Bemidji gains 8-3A winner's bracket final with 3-2 win over STMA in 10 innings

ST. CLOUD - Bemidji advanced to today's 2 p.m. winner's bracket final against Rocori in the Section 8-3A baseball playoffs after outlasting St. Michael-Albertville 3-2 in 10 innings in Saturday's playoff semifinals at the baseball complex in St. Cloud.

Cody Rutledge walked to open the 10th and Collin Leif drilled a double over the center fielder's head to score Rutledge with the game-winner.

The Lumberjacks never led until Leif's blast. STMA opened the scoring with a single run in the fifth but BHS answered in the bottom of the frame as Conner McNallan singled, Nick Hovila reached on a force out and Rutledge delivered an RBI double.

St. Michael-Albertville took a 2-1 lead in the ninth but, once again, the Jacks answered. Sam Dwyer opened the frame with a single and raced all the way to third on McNallan's sacrifice bunt.

Hovila followed with a run-scoring single to center.

In Saturday's other final four opener Rocori, the No. 3 seed, upset second-ranked St. Cloud Apollo 4-1. St. Michael-Albertville and St. Cloud Apollo will meet at 2 p.m. today in an elimination game.

Pat Miller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

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