Elk River Legion almost pulled a big upset Tuesday night, falling 4-3 when a late rally fell short against top-seeded Waite Park in their district playoff opener.
“That’s the best game I’ve seen the kids play in the two years I’ve been coaching,” said coach Tony Williams. “Waite Park beat us 10-0 the week before. This was a game we easily could have won.”
Elk River now faces Sartell on Thursday 5 p.m., and if they win will face St. Cloud 76ers a half-hour after the first game, as the playoffs resume in St. Cloud.
Brandon Meyer pitched the distance for Elk River, giving up seven hits. Three Waite Park pitchers allowed seven hits also.
Waite Park led 4-0 with starter T.J. Fredriicks holding Elk River hitless until the fifth inning.
But Elk River chipped away. Brady Givens had an RBI double in the sixth. Down 4-2 in the top of the seventh, Post 167 got a double from Meyer, a single from Tucker Morrell and an RBI single from Matt Williams with nobody out, Williams taking second on the throw home.
“So we had second and third with none out,” said Williams. “Unfortunately we did not get that last good hit. They brought their best pitcher in.”
Reese Gregory got the last two outs for Waite Park. Frericks pitched 5 2/3 innings, giving up two runs, and Dylan Jaeger got the last out in the sixth and first out in the seventh, giving up one run.
The big blow for the Silver Stars was a two-run double by Frericks.
Waite Park and Sauk Rapids have reached the finals.