The Randolph Rockets American Legion Post 142 baseball team kept its season alive in the sub-section playoffs this past weekend in Green Isle. The Rockets went 2-1 in the first weekend of the East Central sub-section playoffs with a series of close games and will continue play in the consolation bracket on Friday, July 23.
Randolph beat a familiar opponent, Cleveland, 4-1 in the first game Saturday afternoon, July 17. Head coach Braxton Lindow said Cleveland was much improved since the high school season in the spring. Nathan Weckop threw a complete game and allowed just one run in the win against Cleveland.
“They gave us a good battle and we ended up scratching one out,” he said.
The second game saw the Rockets get down early against Holy Family Saturday evening. but claw their way back. Lindow said they had their chances to win, but could not quite get the timely hitting needed and lost 7-5 to drop into the consolation bracket.
The third game on Sunday was against La Sueur-Henderson and Randolph went ahead early. However, La Sueur-Henderson scored a run in each of the first five innings to slowly come back until the game was tied 5-5 heading into the seventh inning. The Rockets held them scoreless in the six and seventh and then walked it off after a single, sacrifice bunt, walk and an error to win 6-5 with two outs. Jacob Weckop pitched the first five innings and then Drew Jenkins threw the final two to close out the game.
Lindow said that the team continues to try and build off the spring season’s success and that players have said their experience playing in the extra-innings marathon at the state tournament helped prepare them for the pressure of playing in the consolation bracket. He also said that they are getting more timely hitting and stringing hits together more than they were at the end of the regular season.
Randolph plays Watertown Friday afternoon, July 23, in Green Isle. The winner faces the loser of either Norwood or Sibley East from the championship bracket later Friday evening. After that game, the Rockets would have to win two more games to come out of the consolation bracket and then beat whoever comes out of the championship bracket twice. That is a max of six games over three days.