Sleepy Eye knocks off Hanska

Staff photo by Steve Muscatello Hanska second baseman Ben Wolf stretches to make a catch at second for an out during the Lakers’ playoff game against Sleepy Eye Tuesday in Hanska.

HANSKA — With Hanska leading the Sleepy Eye Indians 7-4 heading into the seventh inning on Tuesday night at Hanlin Field, the Lakers looked in good shape to roll to a 3-0 start in the Region 2C playoffs.

But the Indians had other plans in mind.

With a five-run seventh inning, the Indians came back to pull out a 9-7 win and improve to 2-1 in the Region 2C playoffs, while Hanska (2-1) dropped its first 2C game.

Joey Walter started the rally for the Indians with a solo home run to right in the top of the seventh. Later in the inning, an error by shortstop Kevin Larson with the bases full added a run for Sleepy Eye and a balk called on reliever Aaron Portner tied things up at 7.

A two-run single by Carter Brinkman then gave the Indians the 9-7 lead.

Jevan Richert got the win on the mound in relief of Alex Sellner, who pitched the first six innings and the final inning. Richert pitched two innings and allowed no runs on no hits and a walk. Sellner finished the ninth inning and collected the save.

Portner took the loss in relief of Brady Mosenden, who pitched five innings and allowed four earned runs on eight hits. Portner allowed five runs on three hits in 1 2/3 innings.

Hanska was first to get on the board in the bottom of the first inning after the 230-pound DH Zach Fischer ripped an RBI single into left-center to score Eric Portner from second base.

Mosenden then hit a deep fly ball into left-center to score the big man from first and put the Lakers up 2-0 after one.

The Lakers added another three runs in the bottom of the third to lead 5-0 after a bases-loaded sac fly by Ben Wolf, an RBI double by Matt Suess and a sac fly by Cole Wellman.

The Indians then got hot in the fourth for four runs. Sleepy Eye started the inning off with five consecutive hits by Matt Berkner, Alan Woitas, Alex Sellner, Matt Mielke and Chad Armbruster, with Sellner, Mielke and Armbruster driving in a run each. A Brinkman groundout scored Mielke for the first out of the inning.

Hanska added a run back in the bottom of the fourth to lead 6-4 after an RBI single up the middle by Zach Fischer scored Kyle Fischer, who doubled right before. The Lakers then took a 7-4 lead in the sixth after Zach Fischer drove in another run on a base hit.

Zach Fischer went 3 for 4 with three RBIs, while Kyle Fischer was 3 for 4.

Alan Woitas led Sleepy Eye with a 3-for-5 night at the plate and two runs scored. Mielke, Armbruster and Walter each had two hits and an RBI for the Indians.