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RAPID CITY — The Mitchell Post 18 Legion baseball team knows there isn't an easy road to the state tournament. To assure its spot in the state tournament, Mitchell will have to finish first or second at the Region 3A tournament, which begins today in Rapid City. Post 18 will face either Pierre Post 8 or Rapid City Post 22 at 8 p.m. Central time, while the winner will face the winner between Sturgis and Rapid City Post 320 at 5 p.m. Thursday. In the double-elimination tournament, Post 18 head coach Luke Norden said the first game looms large.
In its final home game of the regular season, the Mitchell Post 18 Legion baseball team scored early and often. Post 18 poured in four runs in the first inning and scored at least one run in every inning except one in a 12-3 win over Harrisburg on Friday at Cadwell Park in Mitchell. Eight different players had at least one hit and seven different players had at least one RBI for Post 18.
Youth baseball has entered a new era in South Dakota's largest cities. This weekend marks the end of the inaugural season for the younger teams involved with the South Dakota Class A Baseball Program, as the under-9, under-10, under-11 and under-12 divisions are competing in their respective state tournaments at Cadwell Sports Complex in Mitchell. In the past, many youth baseball tournaments below the Legion level have been put together and operated by the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
CANISTOTA—Xavier Ward capped off a stellar junior year by reaching his goal of playing Division I football. This past year, Ward was named the outstanding lineman in Canistota's Class 9A state championship win over Sully Buttes, was a key member of the Hawks' boys basketball team that won the District 8B title and, in the spring, finished second in the Class B shot put. Despite all his past accomplishments, Ward is most proud of his most recent achievement: accepting a scholarship to play football for South Dakota State University.
Competition for playing time will be at an all-time high for Ross Cimpl in his fifth-year coaching the Dakota Wesleyan University football team. Despite returning 17 starters between the offense and defense, a larger than normal group of redshirt freshmen will be eager to find ways to make an impact, creating stiffer competition throughout DWU's lineup.
Matt Ryan enjoyed his weekend stay in Mitchell. The 29-year old Harrisburg resident won two state titles at the 2016 South Dakota Cornhole State Champions on Saturday and Sunday at the Mitchell Activities Center in Mitchell. Ryan took first the individual competition on Saturday and won the 'A' Division with his partner Stu Theel on Sunday. "We had a lot of practice," Ryan said. "A lot of practice goes into it with me and my partner. There's a lot of good guys in the state, you just have to get hot and keep that momentum going."
I always look forward to the Fourth of July. I know I'm not the only person looking forward to celebrating our Independence Day. It usually correlates with time spent on the lake, shooting off fireworks, grilling food and simply enjoying the summer heat with family and friends. However, I look forward to the Fourth of July for another reason—baseball. More specifically, what's known as "Roof baseball."
WINNER — In less than two weeks, Krockett Krolikowski's life changed in a big way. The Winner High School standout lineman received his first Division I college football offer from South Dakota State University on June 27 and two days later, he received an offer from in-state rival South Dakota. Then on Wednesday, the senior-to-be announced via Twitter that he'd accepted the scholarship offer from SDSU, nine days after getting word that the Jacks wanted him on their team.
CHAMBERLAIN—It's been quite a year for Rich Marone. The Chamberlain senior-to-be was a member of the Cubs football team, which reached the Class 11A playoffs, he was on the boys basketball team that placed fourth at the Class A state tournament and most recently, took second place in team roping at the South Dakota State High School Rodeo on June 16 in Belle Fourche. "That's the highest I've ever placed at the state high school rodeo," Marone said. "It felt good. It was pretty cool."
CORSICA—The grass will be getting greener at one area golf course later this year. Dakota Trails Golf Course, formerly known as Lakeview Golf Club, has fundraised more than $200,000 in the past year to pay for the installation of natural grass greens on the nine-hole course located six miles east of Corsica and nine miles northeast of Armour. The grass greens will replace the artificial turf greens that have been in place since the late 1990s.