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Menno Mad Frogs outlast Redfield Dairy Queen in state amateur first round

A four-run seventh inning nudged Menno over Redfield 10-8 Thursday in the Class B South Dakota Amateur baseball state tournament at Cadwell Park.

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Redfield's Tyler Traphagen fields a ball during a game in the first round of the Class B State Amateur tournament on Thursday, Aug. 5, 2021 at Cadwell Park. (Branden Hull / Mitchell Republic)

Menno's surge for four runs in the top of the seventh inning pushed the Mad Frogs past Redfield Dairy Queen with a 10-8 win at the Class B state amateur baseball tournament at Cadwell Park.

There were three lead changes throughout the first six innings of this back and fourth battle. At the top of the seventh, after one out and one batter on, Redfield committed two costly errors that gave Menno a two-run lead along with the momentum.

“Luckily, they kicked the ball around a little bit,” Menno manager Ryan Liebl said. “They were a good team that battled all game, but you have to take advantage of errors when they give it to us.”

Immediately after the two unforced errors, Nate Kucera doubled to left field and Dylan Lehr hit a single to left giving Menno a four-run lead that they could hold onto. Liebl said the bats have come along great the entire postseason and that proved to be right as the Mad Frogs finished this game with 14 hits and seven RBIs.

Kucera went 3 of 5 while Lehr went 3 of 6 with two RBIs for Menno. Macon Oplinger and Tate Bruckner chipped in with two hits each.

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Jamison Kleinsasser, a pickup player from Irene, picked up the pitching victory in four innings. He struck out five and allowed four hits and three runs. Doug Hall started for Menno, pitched five innings and allowed eight hits and five runs.

Redfield Dairy Queen manager Dallas Bohle said despite getting on base every inning, they couldn’t muster one big hit and the game came down to defense.

“We didn’t play very good defense,” Bohle said. “Our strong point all year long was our outfield. We never dropped a fly ball all year long and then all of sudden we dropped one that cost us a couple of runs.”

Bohle said the team was thin at the mound with a pitching rotation of three all year long. They added Warner/Ipswich/Northwestern Legion’s 16-year-old Fatafehi Faonelua right before the tournament began to give the team some depth at the mound.

“It was kind of tough for us all year long,” Bohle said. “It hurt us, we needed another pitcher or two, but if you saw us play at the beginning of the year, we’ve come a long way.”

Redfield’s Seamus O’Connor gave up 12 hits, nine runs, walked two and struck out six batters in 6 ⅔ innings. Faonelua struck out two and allowed two hits in 2 ⅓ innings.

Tyler Traphagen went 3 of 5 at the plate and tallied three runs for Redfield while Joel Osborn went 2 of 4 and scored two runs. Dave Melhoff led the team in RBIs with two.

Menno will play the Plankinton Bankers at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday in Mitchell.

Related Topics: BASEBALL
Branden is a sports reporter that graduated from Purdue University Northwest with a bachelor's degree in communications and a focus in journalism. He joined the Mitchell Republic in June 2021 and covers prep and collegiate athletics. He was also the lead on the Mitchell Republic Full-Court Press, providing a weekly web-exclusive look at high school basketball throughout all of South Dakota. Branden can be reached at bhull@mitchellrepublic.com and found on Twitter at @bhullreports.
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