New Ulm Legion HOF adds 4 more members
NEW ULM — In 2003, New Ulm was to host the Central Plains Regional Baseball Tournament and in 2002 the planning began with a call-out for volunteers to help out with the tournament.
“I showed up and there were quite a few people here at the Legion,” Vern Kitzberger said. “And I was going to be in charge of the ballshaggers. At that time the legion baseball committee was made up of 18 people and they expanded that to 21 members because of the tournament and I was elected to the board as a ‘temporary’ member. But by the time the tournament started I was one of the co-chairmen. At the end of the tournament they were going to go back to 18 members again except that three members retired so I was elected to stay on and I have been on ever since.”‘
On Saturday at the New Ulm Legion, Kitzberger was inducted into the New Ulm Legion Hall of Fame as a non-player along with former players Brady Mosenden, Tyler Morgan and Scott Knisley.
Kitzberger was secretary for two years before becoming chairman of the committee and served in that capacity for 11 years.
“I have had a lot of highlights but hosting the Central Plains Tournament is one of them along with New Ulm Legion Gold’s comeback win over Creighton Prep three years ago in the championship game of the Upper Midwest Classic,” Kitzberger said. “And now being the (Second) District Director.”
Kitzberger has been a workhorse for the legion baseball in New Ulm.
Mosenden, who played for New Ulm Gold from 2005-06 and posted an 8-4 career mark on the mound said the best thing was playing with the guys.
“You’re playing with all of your friends and playing with the caliber of players I played with. New Ulm has such a tremendous baseball tradition and it is the best place you could ask for to play ball.”
For Morgan, who played from 2004-06, it was also “playing baseball with the guys, going to all of the tournaments and all of the friendships that you made. And learning the game from the good coaches.”
One of his memories came when he was playing for the New Ulm Junior Legion in 2003 when he was added to the Gold roster for the Central Plains Tournament.
“Back then baseball was everything to me and I looked forward to it every day,” he said. “Spring was my favorite season because I knew that baseball was coming.”
Morgan is the all-time career home run leader for New Ulm Legion with 23.
Knisley, who had a career batting average of .389, said that he had “good team and good coaches. And I loved playing at Johnson Park. Being in the Hall of Fame is an honor.”