The Blaine Fusion stepped up to the plate and won a decisive first-round game in amateur baseball state tournament play. Beating the Duluth Express 16-4 on Aug. 20, the Fusion advanced to the tournament’s second round, played against the St. Cloud Beaudreau’s Saints Aug. 26 in Dassel.
But the Saints foiled the Fusions’ attempts to rally for a state championship ring.
After Beaudreau opened with three runs in the first inning, Blaine rallied to score one in the third.
The Saints responded with three more in the top of the fourth and one more in the top of the sixth before Blaine could tack on one more run in the bottom of the seventh.
Five more Beaudreau runs in the top of the eighth made the score 12-2 and Blaine could only score three times more, ending their state tournament run with a 12-5 loss to the St. Cloud team.
The Fusion play a consolation round game versus Chaska at 5 p.m. Sept. 2 in Dassel.
Entering state tournament play, the Fusion earned a No. 1 ranking in the Metro Minny Town Ball league with a 35-10 overall regular season record.
Coon Rapids Redbirds were ranked No. 2 with its 24-14 overall regular season record but fell in the first round of state tournament play when Beaudreau’s Saints beat Coon Rapids 16-5 Aug. 20.
Other local Metro Minny teams finished the regular season race in that league and did not advance to state tournament play.
The Anoka Bucs posted a 10-13 win-loss record for a No. 7 ranking.
The East Bethel Bandits went 2-18 for No. 8, while the Andover Aces finished 1-15 for a last place end-of-season ranking.