Eagles continue win streak into post season, advance to region playoffs
The Morris Eagles baseball team is headed to the Region 9C tournament Saturday in Madison. Morris is the No. 1 seed from the Canvas Division and will play the Dumont Saints at 11 a.m. Ortonville will play Sacred Heart; Raymond will play Appleton; and Clinton will play Madison in the other first-round matchups.
The first round is single elimination. The remaining four teams will vie for two spots in the state tournament in a double elimination format.
The Eagles finished the regular season 13-5 and took a seven-game winning streak into the playoffs. As the leaders of the Land O' Ducks League - Canvas Division, Morris hosted Appleton, Montevideo, and Benson July 24-25.
The Morris Eagles opened the playoffs with a 9-1 win over Appleton on July 24.
Eric Asche had a 4-for-5 showing with three RBI. He hit RBI singles in the first, third and eighth innings.
Kirby Marquart was 3-for-4 with a long two-run homer in the seventh inning to break the game open.
Ross Haugen was 2-for-4 with a double and two RBI. Dusty Sauter chipped in a 2-for-5 performance with an RBI as well.
Adam Torkelson picked up his seventh win lowering his ERA to 1.75 with a five-hit, six-strikeout complete game. He was inducing ground balls all night recording 14 ground-ball outs.
The victory put the Eagles in the winner's bracket.
Montevideo defeated Benson 4-2 and also advanced to play the Eagles.
The Morris Eagles advanced to the Region 9C playoffs with a 5-2 win over the Montevideo Spartans on July 25.
Morris got going early with two runs in the first inning. Craig Knochenmus had a bases-loaded walk and Dusty Sauter had an RBI fielder's choice. Matthew Carrington had an RBI groundout in the fourth to make it 3-0.
Two more runs were tacked on in the sixth. A couple of clutch two-out hits drove in the runs. Jamie VanKempen laced an RBI double to right center and Carrington ripped a run-scoring single to left to plate VanKempen.
That was it for the offense, but Andy Lembcke cruised on the mound. Battling a sore "hammy", Lembcke worked eight strong innings giving up two runs on seven hits, three walks, and six strikeouts.
Craig Knochenmus came on with two on in the ninth and retired the final three batters for his fifth save.
The Eagles won their 10th straight game, defeating Appleton 12-10 in the Division Championship August 1.
The Eagles fell behind 9-1 after the top of the third inning in a rare rough start by Adam Torkelson.
Three runs in the bottom of the third brought the Eagles within 9-4. A five-run seventh inning gave Morris a 10-9 lead.
The big blow was a three-run triple by Kirby Marquart that hit within a foot of the top of the fence in center field. Appleton managed to tie the score in the top of the ninth that set the stage for more heroics by Kirby Marquart.
After Jamie VanKempen bounced a single to right for his fourth hit of the game, Marquart launched a home run to right center to give the Eagles the victory. His day finished just a single short of the cycle. Marquart was 3-for-6 with a double, triple, home run and five RBI.
Chase Rambow was 2-for-5 with an RBI. VanKempen finished 4-for-5 with two RBI in the nine hole.
Matthew Carrington got the win on the mound going 6 and 2/3 innings in relief. He gave up two earned runs on seven hits, two walks and struck out four.