Late Mayo rally beats Albert Lea

Published 9:47 am Monday, June 22, 2009

It was a matchup of two of the top teams Sunday at Hayek Field when the Albert Lea VFW team faced Rochester Mayo, and Post 447 came in with the momentum of a big doubleheader sweep of Rochester Century the day before.

Riding the momentum of the sweep and the strong pitching of Cole Sorenson Albert Lea (8-2) was in position to pick up another victory, but a three-run lead slipped away in the seventh inning of the first game of a doubleheader with Post 1215 as Mayo came back to steal a 5-3, eight-inning win. Post 447 did come back in the second game to earn a split with a 4-3 win, but the first game was the game that counted for the league standings.

With one out in the eighth Lance Dozier reached on error and came around to score on a single from Connor Paulson to score the game-winning run. Bill Belch added an RBI single to make the game 5-3 and Albert Lea wasn’t able to respond in the bottom half of the eighth.

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Through the first six innings it was a pitchers’ duel between Sorenson and Paulson, the Post 1215 starter.

Paulson had given up just four hits through five innings, but in the sixth Connor Kortan reached on a walk and Aaron Klatt followed with a base hit to start the threat. Sorenson delivered a two-run double as Albert Lea took a 2-0 lead. Two batters later Cody Haaland laced an RBI single down the third base line to make it 3-0.

Post 447 coach Jack Kortan wondered after the game if the three run lead made his team a little too comfortable because it didn’t hold.

Mayo came back in the seventh for three runs of its own to tie the game as the first three batters reached base. Bill Belch hit an RBI single to score Paulson, who reached on a walk. Matt Wolter followed with an RBI single and Lincoln Goetting added an RBI ground out to tie game.

Sorenson pitched all eight innings and allowed four earned runs on eight hits while striking out seven. He had only given up three base hits prior to the seventh.

In the second game Albert Lea rallied from a 1-0 deficit for a 4-3 win.

In the fourth inning Post 447 scored three times to take the lead. Josh Eisenbraun drove in Connor Kortan to tie the game. Later with Klatt on third and Eisenbraun on second Albert Lea put on a suicide squeeze that worked to perfection. With Klatt breaking for home Mayo pitcher Jesse Haukom delivered a pitch over the head of catcher Justin Aldrich that allowed Klatt and Eisenbraun to score.

Post 447 took advantage of another wild pitch in the sixth to score the game-winning run.

Mayo 5, Albert Lea 3, 8 innings, Game 1

Mayo 000 000 32 — 5 8 1

Albert Lea 000 003 00 — 3 7 2

WP — Connor Paulson 8 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 7 K

LP — Cole Sorenson 8 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 7 K

Albert Lea 4, Mayo 3, Game 2

Mayo 010 020 0 — 3 7 0

Albert Lea 000 301 x — 4 5 1

WP — Nick Dulas 4 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 1 K

LP — Jesse Haukom 4 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K