Chris Harrell is a sports reporter for the Red Wing Republican Eagle. Previously, he interned at the St. Paul Pioneer Press and The Daily Caller in Washington, D.C. For updates on local sports, follow Chris on Twitter at @RECHarrell.
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Mike Stegora showed up to the game Tuesday unsure which team the Red Wing Aces were facing at the Red Wing Athletic Field. The scorecard wasn't any help as manager-in-residence Steve Boldt had written, "Who cares who we play." The Aces were playing Wisconsin Baseball Association state champions, the Menomonie Eagles, but the words held true as the Eagles committed six errors and Stegora did not make an out in an 8-0 Red Wing win. "We put the ball in play quite a bit," Boldt said. "We made them work.
Baseball is a family game. It's passed down from parents to children, fathers to sons. The Gibart family is no different. Red Wing Aces' co-manager Andy Gibart, 32, learned from his father Steve and immediately took to the game. Now, Andy's son Brodie has leapt into baseball with little regard for anything else. "Obviously as a baseball diehard myself, I was hoping, without pushing, that he would love baseball," Andy said. "It was more of me being around the game and hoping that he picked it up.
Aaron Johnson's pitch count kept rising and his effectiveness improved with it. The Red Wing ace struggled to command his pitches early and threw 130 pitches in seven innings during Saturday's 5-3 victory against the Coon Rapids Redbirds. "My pitch count was up for the second game in a row but this is a stepping stone that I figured it out a little bit," Johnson said. "My arm felt great." The tide of the game turned as Johnson got out of a bases loaded, no outs jam in the fifth inning. "It helped me focus on mechanics and trust my stuff," Johnson said. "I was rushing a little bit.
Cannon Falls' Matt Moskal wasn't satisfied with the way he played during the first round of the Class 2A boys state golf tournament and came back to card a 38 Wednesday at The Ridges at Sand Creek. The final round of the state tournament was shortened to nine holes and delayed five hours due to inclement weather. Moskal was scheduled to tee off at 7:30 a.m. but finally teed off on Hole No. 1 around 12:50 p.m. Moskal's 27-hole total of 124 tied him for 65th place. "The goal today was just to shoot better," Moskal, a ninth-grader, said.
JORDAN, Minn. - Lake City shook off the jitters from Tuesday and held onto fourth place at the Class 2A girls state golf tournament Tuesday at The Ridges at Sand Creek. "We had a great back nine today," Tigers' head coach Steve Randgaard said. "The kids like the back nine.
Ryan Boldt's phone did not even ring when he was drafted by the Boston Red Sox Saturday as the 653rd overall pick in the 22nd round of the 2013 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. The Red Wing senior was making the rounds at more than a dozen graduation open houses and his phone wasn't picking up a signal, but he received a text saying, "Congratulations." A half hour later, a voicemail popped up. "I had about 12-15 grad parties I had to get to that day so I was just running around all over town.
Isaac Toivonen will be Red Wing's first state entrant since 2007 when he steps on the court Thursday morning at the Baseline Tennis Center on the University of Minnesota campus in Minneapolis. His road to the Class 2A boys state tennis tournament was mostly smooth, save for a 6-4, 7-6 (2) loss in the Section 1AA finale, but Toivonen knows his first-round opponent Thursday, Eagan's Zach Ekstein, will be his toughest test to date. "He's a really consistent player," Toivonen said. "When he played (Red Wing's) George Gabrielson a few years ago, I don't think he missed. ...
AUSTIN, Minn. - Lake City was a foot away from sending Monday's Section 1AA playoff game to extra innings against Kasson-Mantorville. The Tigers trailed 6-4 at the start of the seventh inning and proceeded to load the bases with no outs. After a double play brought in a run, Logan Thomas stepped to the plate with the tying run on third and laced a sinking line drive to left field. Charging hard in left field, Nick Bauer made a diving catch to preserve the KoMets' 6-5 victory at Riverland Community College. "We were inches away from tying it," Lake City head coach Perry Iberg said.
The 2013 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft is fast approaching but the reality of getting selected is still sinking in for Red Wing senior Ryan Boldt and his family. "I guess we're kind of taking it as it comes and letting the cards fall where they may," Boldt said. "I don't know if I really have expectations that I've set for myself and for the draft," Boldt said. "Like I've been told many times, I'm in a win-win situation.
AUSTIN, Minn. - Zumbrota-Mazeppa only lost to one opponent this season. The problem is that the opponent, Kasson-Mantorville, is in the Cougars' section and took down top-ranked Z-M twice in the regular season. On Thursday, the Cougars' had a chance for redemption, but an offensive onslaught by the KoMets ended Z-M's season with a 16-6 five-inning loss in the Section 1AA finals at Todd Park. In two regular-season meetings prior to Thursday, Z-M and K-M combined to score a total of four runs.