Well it’s that time of year again, where Summer sports are coming to a close and Fall sports are just getting started. Once again Osceola was able to field an American Legion baseball team, which was sponsored by Osceola Post 221.
With 16 fine young men from the Osceola High School, the team put together a pretty solid baseball squad. With a mixture of six seniors, eight juniors and two sophomores they had a pretty good pitching and defensive team.
With the extension of the Osceola High School season this year, (Middle Border Champs, Regional Champs) and finally losing in the semi final of the sectional, legion ball got a tardy start in the last week of June. Family vacations, basketball camps, football camps, weight lifting and jobs made it tough at times to come up with enough players to field a team, but they always managed to have a competitive group. Between June 25 and July 20 the team squeezed in 10 regular season games, finishing with a 4 win 6 loss record.
July 23 began play in the Regional Tournament, which was held in Baldwin. Game 1 Osceola faced a young team from Osseo. Coach decided to go with Dylan Cotch on the mound. Not knowing what to expect from the young man, the team planned good arms behind Cotch if needed. The bats came to life early and that was all Cotch needed to throw a complete game. He held Osseo to 1 run on 3 hits while Osceola put up 12 runs on 13 hits. Osceola won 12-1 in five innings. That win put the team up against a tough Baldwin team on Saturday. Starting on the mound was upper classman Tyler Ulrich. He threw four good innings, only giving up two runs on three hits. In the fifth inning coach brought in Jacob Schultz, he threw 1 1/3 innings giving up three runs on one hit. Then Jacob Sedivy was asked to come in and close it out. After 1 2/3 innings Jacob gave up no runs on one hit. With Osceola’s bats working, the team put up 10 runs with nine hits and a final score of 10-5 in Osceola’s favor. This moved Osceola into the championship game vs Altoona.
Sunday Tanner Viebrock got the start on the mound and came in and threw four good innings against a good hitting Altoona team, giving up 10 runs on seven hits. After four it was 10-5 in Altoona’s favor. The youngest arm on the Osceola pitching squad was Graden Mork, who was asked to keep the game close and give the team a chance. Graden did just that, holding Altoona to three runs on one hit. Osceola had their chances but just couldn’t come up with enough clutch hits, leaving the final score at 13-9 in Altoona’s favor. So with that loss the team turned around to play Altoona again, with the winner heading to the State Tournament. Coach figured as long as Mork’s arm was warm he would get the start. Mork did a great job, going four innings with the score tied 3-3 when he left the game, giving up three runs on seven hits. Coming in to finish the game would be Osceola’s “crafty lefty” Lucas Sedivy. Sedivy came in and gave it his all for one inning but unfortunately had to leave the game with a sore arm. Sedivy gave up three runs on four hits. Once again Sedivy was asked to come in and close it out and keep the game close to give the team a chance in the seventh. Sedivy allowed no runs on one hit. Osceola came to bat in the seventh but just couldn’t come up with the right hits at the right time. After all was said and done Altoona came out on top 6-3 to advance to the state tournament.
With this loss the guys now know what it takes to get to the big stage at a state tournament.
“I know they are going to work hard at their Fall and Winter sports. But what I am most excited about is coming back in April to the Spring baseball season,” said coach Ingram. “With all the talent and hard work ethics we have, I believe a lot of good things are going to happen.”