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Alexandria cruises past Flandreau 15-0 in six innings

Alexandria third baseman Cory Marek fields a ground ball against Flandreau in the South Dakota Class B state amateur baseball tournament Friday at Cadwell Park in Mitchell. (Eric Mayer/ Republic)

Two six-run innings carried the Alexandria Angels past the Flandreau Cardinals 15-0 in six innings during a quarterfinal game at the South Dakota Class B state amateur baseball tournament Friday at Cadwell Park in Mitchell.

Alexandria manager Chris Marek said the offense was clicking for the entire batting order.

"We were seeing pitches and squaring some balls up," Marek said. "One through nine, we put hits together."

Alexandria (22-2) advances to play Crofton (Neb.) in a semifinal game at 7:30 p.m. today at Cadwell Park in Mitchell. Flandreau finishes its season at 13-10 and is eliminated.

"You just got to stop the bleeding at some point in a game like that," Flandreau manager Bret Severtson said. "They are a good team. We needed to make some plays and some pitches, and it's just a matter of executing."

The Alexandria defense shined, committing no errors against the Cardinals, with third baseman Cory Marek making two difficult plays. He fielded slow rollers down the line and fired them to first in time to get the runner.

"As long as you make the plays you should make and get a couple of those good plays, that's all a pitcher needs to shorten a game," Chris Marek said.

Cole Wenande led off the bottom of the third, beating out an infield single and after stealing second base, scored on a fielder's choice. Tyson Gau smacked a double and scored on a Chris Marek RBI single to put Alexandria up 2-0.

"We just put the ball in play a lot and got the offense going," Wenande said. "We just got on a roll."

After shutting out the Cardinals in the top of the fourth inning, the Angels exploded for six runs with Wenande hitting a deep two-run single to right field. But, while rounding first base, Wenande came up limping, grabbing his hamstring and was subbed out of the game.

"We need to stick together and with Trever Vermeulen taking the mound (today), it's a big confidence booster," said Wenande, who added his chances to play in today's game were at 40 percent.

"We will have to wait and see where he is," Marek said about Wenande's injury. "I like the group of guys that I got. I have guys on the bench that deserve to be playing, so we will fill his spot if necessary,"

In the bottom of the fifth inning, Peyton Smith hit an infield single, advanced on a Cardinal wild pitch and stole home to put Alexandria up 9-0. The Angels added six more runs in the bottom of the sixth to take 15-0 lead and mercy rule the Cardinals.

Tyson Gau pitched a complete-game shutout, allowing four hits while striking out five. Flandreau starter Zach Weinardt took the loss, giving up eight runs off eight hits with one strikeout in three innings.