By PAUL FRONZAK Correspondent
By PAUL FRONZAK
CorrespondentThe Sobieski Skis continued their winning ways with hard fought 3-1 victory over Union Hill in Red Wing in round three of the 83rd Annual State Baseball Tournament Aug. 27.
Joe Thoma’s two-out, two run homer in the fourth inning broke a 1-1 tie and was all the offense the Region 8 Champs would need for the victory. Sobieski is one of the four teams remaining in the tournament undefeated. The Skis along with Blue Earth, St. Patrick, and the Rochester Blues are 3-0 and in the winners bracket of the tourney.
Once again the drafted players for the Skis played a large part in the win. Jason King, draftee from the Randall Cubs, was very solid as he scattered eight hits and allowed only one run in a 102 pitch complete game victory.
Catcher Scott Geiger, draftee from Buckman, also contributed with the bat going 2/4 with an RBI and a solid game defensively behind the plate. Geiger knocked home the Skis’ first run in the fourth. After Nate Olson walked and stole second, Geiger came through with a two-out single to score Olson. Geiger also scored on Joe Thoma’s two run homer later that inning.
“King battled out there tonight,” commented Skis manager Todd Olson. “He really did a nice job.”
When asked to compare this outing with his start a week earlier against St. Francis, King was quick to admit he wasn’t nearly as sharp. “Not even close,” commented the big right-hander. “I wanted to keep the ball down, that Union Hill line-up was very aggressive. They really came out swinging. I just tried to keep the ball down and throw strikes. Scott Geiger did a great job behind the plate tonight.”
The Skis have been an impressive team during the tournament’s first three rounds. With a combination of strong pitching, solid defense, and timely hitting the Skis have represented the Victory League and Region 8 very well.
Not to be overlooked has been the play of two of the young Skis’ starters, infielder Jake Kluver and right fielder Beau Hanowski. Kluver has been solid in the field and also came up with a big hit to knock in two runs in the tournament-opening round.
Hanowski has been one of the tournament’s hottest hitters. After his 4/4 performance against Union Hill, the Flyer junior is 8/10 with two walks in the tourney.
“I’d like to say I’m pleasantly surprised, but I’m not. Beau has been hitting for us all year. He has a great approach at the plate,” manager Todd Olson commented. “Beau and Jake Kluver have come up big for us all year. Those guys can play.”
The Skis will now face Blue Earth on Friday, Sept. 1 at 5 p.m. in Miesville. Blue Earth was the state champion in 2004. The State Class C title game is slated for Monday, Sept. 4 in Red Wing.
Sobieski 3 9 0
Union Hill 1 8 1
WP:Jason King 9 inning 1 ER, 8 hits 1-walk 4-K’s
LP:Matt Sticha 5 innings 3 ER, 5 hits 2-walks 1-K
Hitting:Joe Thoma 2/4, HR 2RBIs, run; Beau Hanowski 4/4; Scott Geiger 2/4 RBI, run; Jason King 1/4.