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Farmington American Legion baseball: Short-handed at sub-state

Farmington’s Jordan DeCroock is thrown out at the plate early in Friday’s 6-0 loss to Lakeville South in the sub-state tournament at Alimagnet Park in Burnsville. Post 189 finished the summer with a record of 8-13.

Even at full strength, the Farmington Legion baseball team would have had its hands full at last weekend’s sub-state tournament.

But missing four starters and suiting up just nine players made even being competitive near impossible. Two players were gone on vacation and two others were attending a baseball showcase as Post 189 lost to New Prague 18-3 and Lakeville South 6-0 in its final two games of the summer at Alimagnet Park in Burnsville.

“Our hands were tied at that point. I think we could have made a run at the thing, or at least won a few games, but we were missing a lot of important guys and that made it tough to get a whole lot accomplished,” Farmington coach Jared Rowan said.

The four players Farmington were missing were among the team’s top six hitters, which meant rallying was going to be difficult after falling behind 5-0 in the second inning last Thursday against New Prague. Starter Austin Martinsen allowed two more runs in the third before Carter Blomster came in and gave up four runs over the next two frames.

New Prague ended the game via the 10-run rule with six more runs in the sixth.

Jordan DeCroock supplied three of Post 189’s seven hits, drove in a run and scored once. Landon Nielson added an RBI single.

Post 189 played better on Friday, but still couldn’t get its offense going against Lakeville South. Starter Maverick Carlson kept the game fairly close, holding South to five runs over seven innings.

“Maverick Carlson did everything we could have asked him to do. He threw strikes and we made the plays behind him,” Rowan said. “A good team like that is going to score a few runs and we didn’t have a full lineup — guys were out of place in the lineup and out of position.”

Jordan Beschorner pitched the eighth and gave up one unearned run.

Six Farmington players recorded one hit apiece. The closest the team came to scoring was in the third inning when Nathan Kraml singled to right field and DeCroock was thrown out at the plate.

Post 189 closed out the season with a record of 8-13. Rowan was disappointed with how the season ended, but pleased with how the team played when it was at full strength.

“We were excited for the playoffs for the first time in a while. We pitched well and played good defense most of the year and our bats started to come alive at the Gopher Classic,” Rowan said. “The guys ended up having to be gone and that changes the whole dynamic of the team. I’m curious to see how we could have done with our full squad.”