The Cannon Falls Bombers American Legion Post 142 baseball team went 2-1 during the first weekend of the East Central sub-section playoffs in Arlington. The Bombers won their first game 1-0 over Elysian on Friday morning but then lost to Norwood 8-3 later that evening. They dropped down to the consolation bracket where they defeated Cleveland 5-2 on Sunday to advance to the second weekend.
The Bombers will have to win their next four games to come out of the consolation bracket for a shot at the championship, where they would have to beat whoever comes out of the championship bracket twice. Cannon Falls next plays Kenyon in Arlington on Friday afternoon, July 23. The winner of that game plays the loser of Holy Family and Plato from the championship bracket Friday evening with the rest of play to be determined.
Head coach Tyler Quinlan said that each of Cannon Falls’ first three games had their own unique positives. He said that Riley Miller pitched a great game one against Elysian, backed up by solid defense and quality at-bats. The game’s lone run came when Marcus Banks reached, advanced to second and went to third on a sacrifice bunt by Loden Bell. Bell’s bunt forced an error that allowed Banks to score.
In game two Quinlan said the team really responded once they got down early due to unforced errors like a hit batter, walks and passed balls. The Bombers got down 5-0 but proceeded to immediately cut the deficit to 5-3. They had chances to win the game, which included leaving the bases loaded in the sixth inning. Norwood was able to add a few runs late to close out the game.
The win over Cleveland 5-2 on Sunday was between two teams that know each other well and Quinlan said Cannon Falls did what they needed to do. Jonathan Monson pitched well for the Bombers, who scored three runs early on and continued to add to their lead. They gave up a few runs late after throwing the ball around a little, but were able to buckle down and close out the game.
Looking ahead, Quinlan added that the goal is to play well and that the process is more important than the result.