Warroad knocks off Pelican Rapids
PERHAM, Minn. - A minor batting stance adjustment led to major results for Warroad senior David Larson. Larson went 2-for-3 with a home run and four RBI to lead the Warriors to an 8-0 victory against Pelican Rapids in the Class 2A, Section 8 high...
PERHAM, Minn. - A minor batting stance adjustment led to major results for Warroad senior David Larson.
Larson went 2-for-3 with a home run and four RBI to lead the Warriors to an 8-0 victory against Pelican Rapids in the Class 2A, Section 8 high school baseball championship at Al Krueger Field.
Warroad - which advanced to the state tournament for the first time since 1988 - will face the winner of Section 3 at 10 a.m. June 16 at Dick Putz Field in St. Cloud, Minn.
"I just tried to hit the ball hard," Larson said. "It just worked out."
During batting practice, Warriors coach Scott Knutson suggested Larson back off the plate a few inches to make it easier to hit inside pitches.
Larson took the advice and responded with two hits and four RBI in his first two atbats.
Larson's towering, two-run homer to left-center field gave Warroad a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning.
He put the Warriors ahead 4-0 with a two-run single in the top of the third. Warroad went on to score five in the third to take a 7-0 advantage.
"He got his body through the ball and hit it hard," Knutson said of Larson.
Warroad pitcher Bryce Demolee took care of the rest on the mound. The Warriors' top starter the past three seasons, Demolee baffled the Vikings all game with a steady mix of fastballs, curves and changeups.
He allowed four hits and struck out five in six innings. "I was going to let him go as far as he could," Knutson said. "I'm not surprised he did what he did."
Warroad (20-1) added a run in the top of the sixth to make it 8-0.
- innings in the loss.
"They were patient when they were hitting and they waited for their pitch," Pelican Rapids coach Steve Schwartz said. "Eight runs is a tall order and you have to peck away. We just didn't peck away."
Schwartz said an emotional 6-4 comeback victory against Perham in the semifinals earlier in the day might have hurt the Vikings.
Pelican Rapids battled from a 3-0 deficit to score six runs in the final three innings against the Yellowjackets.
"You can only come back so many times," Schwartz said. "It was tough to get the emotions back to where they needed to be."
Warroad 205 001 0-8 7 0 Pelican Rapids 000 000 0-0 4 3 W: Demolee, Bengtson (7) and Larson. PR: Scott, Mickelson and Abel. W-Demolee. L-Scott. HR-Larson, Warroad.
Pelican Rapids 000 012 3-6 13 1 Perham 111 001 0-4 9 1 PR: Johnson and Abel. P: Silbernagel, Doll (6) and Moenkedick. W-Johnson. L-Doll. HR-Johnson, Pelican Rapids.
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