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Baseball: Cougars use big sixth inning to knock Tigers out of tournament

Farmington hung around for a while, but eventually got outlasted by Lakeville South in Saturday’s Section 1AAAA tournament in Dundas.

The game was tied 1-1 until the bottom of the sixth inning when the Cougars strung together three singles, three doubles and a walk in a span of eight batters. The six-run inning was more than enough to carry South to a 7-1 victory.

“This game was kind of a microcosm of our season. We struggled getting guys on or manufacturing runs and we pitched well, but we had one inning that blew up for us a bit,” Farmington coach Jon Graff said. “They had some big hits down in the count 0-2 and 1-2 so they earned it.”

The Tigers, meanwhile, managed just three hits and went 0 for their last 14 after Mikey Fredrickson’s RBI single in the top of the third. Leadoff hitter Sam Wilson went 2 for 3 and scored the team’s lone run.

Starter Justin King matched South’s hurler pitch for pitch over the first five innings. After surrendering a leadoff walk and a run-scoring double in the first, he set down 11 batters in a row. He then left a fifth-inning leadoff single stranded on third to keep it 1-1.

The Tigers finished with a record of 5-19. Two of those wins came in the Section 1AAAA tournament, allowing them to advance to the second weekend for the first time since 2006. The Cougars lost their next game in extra innings to Owatonna, which now faces top-seeded Lakeville North to go to state.

“It was great to see the guys come together and extend their season like they did,” Graff said. “It’s realy something to build off of for next year.”