Tri-City already won a state championship last season. But there’s something about this team that makes this one special. After facing twists and turns all season long, Tri-City Red beat Wayzata 16-8 for the Legion state championship on Sunday afternoon.
It didn’t take long for the electric Wayzata offense to strike in the first inning. A couple of errors by the Wayzata defense allowed Engdahl, Dahl, and Kaye to all cross home plate and give Wayzata a 3-0 lead.
Tri-City did their part to get back in the game in the bottom half of the inning. After 2 singles to lead off the inning, Carter Traczyk added his team’s third single, gathering an RBI in the process. Solfest and Jepko each dropped down a sacrifice bunt with an RBI, tying the game at 3 after 1.
Wayzata’s offensive output continued in the 2nd. Brennan Albert, batting over .500 this tournament, added to his impressive resume with a bases loaded double that drove in 2 runs. Nick Kaye and Sam Westermeyer followed that up with RBI singles to make it 7-3 Wayzata.
Walks, errors, and hit-by-pitches all played a factor in Tri-City’s comeback in the bottom of the 2nd. Koehn and Sparks each scored in the bizzare sequence of events. Ben Jepko added 2 more RBI’s to his collection to make it 3 on the day and even the game at 7 a piece. All of this action is just through 2 innings.
Tri-City got their first lead of the day after Ty Koehn came home to score on an error. Wayzata quickly evened up the game with a run in the top of the 4th.
In the bottom half of the 4th, Tri-City found its groove. Will Rogers blasted a 3 run home run, and Stenstrom drove in another run via a sacrifice fly. Their offense added 2 more runs in the inning, making it a 14-8 lead after 4. Tri-City cruised from that point on, adding two more runs in 7th to make it 16-8. Wayzata’s 8 run deficit was too much to come back from, and Tri-City ended up winning 16-8 to repeat as state champions.
Both teams already advanced to the regional tournament in Dickinson, North Dakota.