Oakdale legion finishes second in sub-state

Lower-seeded teams pulling off upsets was a big story in the Sub-State 7 American Legion baseball tournament and Oakdale led the charge. The Mavericks were seeded ninth and four times beat a higher-seeded opponent.

Oakdale rode that wave of upsets all the way to the championship final, where it ran into a team that proved to be upset-proof.

Second-seeded Hamline Purple, whose lineup is made up of players that attend Cretin-Derham Hall High School in St. Paul, was the only team in the tournament that didn’t lose to a lower-seeded foe. Purple claimed the sub-state crown by beating Oakdale 15-5 in seven innings.

Despite the loss, Oakdale had itself quite a tournament. The Mavericks opened the sub-state playoffs by beating eighth-seeded Rosemount II 13-0. Then they knocked off top-seeded Fridley Gold Eagle 9-3 and fifth-seeded Kramer-Berg from Mahtomedi 8-0.

The Kramer-Berg win set up a contest against Hamline Purple on July 22 and Purple showed it wasn’t going to let anyone push it around. Hamline beat Oakdale 9-1 to secure a spot in the final.

The loss dropped Oakdale into the losers bracket, where it needed a victory to move to the championship round. The Mavericks earned their spot in the final by beating the third-seeded North St. Paul 39ers 3-2.

Oakdale faced a tall task in the finals. Because it had a loss and Hamline Purple didn’t, Oakdale would have needed to beat Hamline twice to advance to state. 

Hamline Purple represented Sub-State 7 and the Fourth District in last weekend’s state tournament in Delano. The tournament took place past the deadline for this edition of the Review.

The 16 teams in the state tournament represented seven of the 10 American Legion districts in Minnesota. The districts that did not advance a team to the state tournament were Five, Seven and Nine.

This is the fourth year of the Sub-State format used to determine the state-tournament field. The American Legion baseball teams in the state are divided into 15 groups called sub-states and each sub-state holds a double-elimination tournament to determine a champion. 

In four years, two districts have yet to see a team advance to state via a sub-state championship. Districts Five and Nine haven’t been represented in the state tournament since 2011, the last year of district tournaments being the route to the state tournament.

 

NSP 39ers

The 39ers weren’t immune to the upset bug that swept through Sub-State 7. They opened the tournament with a 10-1 loss to sixth-seeded Rosetown and then faced a long road to get to the final.

North St. Paul was able to stave off elimination twice as it tried to rally through the losers bracket. The 39ers beat seventh-seeded Hamline Purple 12-9 and fifth-seeded Kramer-Berg 11-1 in seven innings to keep its dreams of a state tournament berth alive.

That dream died in the next round, however, as ninth-seeded Oakdale edged North St. Paul 3-2. It was Oakdale’s fourth win over a higher-seeded tournament in the tournament.

The 39ers finished the season with a record of 21-13.

 

Brian Meyers can be reached at bmeyers@lillienews.com or 651-748-7819. Follow him on Twitter @BMeyersNews.

 

Sub-State 7 American Legion baseball tournament

 

Play-in game

Game 1 — Oakdale 13, Rosemount 0 (Rosemount eliminated)

 

First round

Game 2 — Rosetown 10, North St. Paul 39ers 1

Game 3 — Hamline Purple 7, Hamline Red 2

Game 4 — Kramer-Berg 4, West St. Paul Challenger 3

Game 5 — Oakdale 9, Fridley Gold Eagle 3

 

Second round

Game 6 — North St. Paul 39ers 12, Hamline Red 9 (Hamline Red eliminated)

Game 7 — Hamline Purple 24, Rosetown 3, 6 innings

Game 8 — West St. Paul Challenger 8, Fridley Gold Eagle 6 (Fridley Gold Eagle eliminated)

Game 9 — Oakdale 8, Kramer-Berg 0

 

Third round

Game 10 — North St. Paul 39ers 11, Kramer-Berg 1, 7 innings (Kramer-Berg eliminated)

Game 11 — West St. Paul Challenger 13, Rosetown 3, 7 innings (Rosetown eliminated)

Game 12 — Hamline Purple 9, Oakdale 1

 

Fourth round

Game 13 — Oakdale 3, North St. Paul 39ers 2 (North St. Paul eliminated)

Game 14 — Hamline Purple 8, West St. Paul 4 (West St. Paul eliminated)

 

Championship round

Game 15 — Hamline Purple 15, Oakdale 5 (Oakdale eliminated)

 

 

 

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