The Faribault Lakers came from behind Wednesday night to defeat the New Prague Orioles 8-7 on a walk-off walk at Bell Field.  The Lakers had a very shaky start in the field with four errors in the first two innings and found themselves behind by a 5-1 score before they chipped away to get back in the contest.  With the win Faribault plays New Market in Veseli Friday.  A Lakers win would mean another game Sunday for the Region 3C title and a first round bye in the State Amateur Baseball Tournament.

Matt Lane started for Faribault going the first 7 2/3 innings.  He allowed 8 hits, 7 runs, 2 earned, walked one and struck out six batters. Lane threw 122 pitches, 83 strikes.  Jack Helgeson recorded his 7th win of the season throwing the final 1 1/3 innings.  He gave up 3 hits, 0 runs, walked no batters and struck out 2, throwing 32 pitches, 21 for strikes.

Right handed pitcher Joel Zimmerman of Lakeville started the game for New Prague and pitched the first 5 innings, giving up 8 hits, 5 runs, 1 earned, struck out 3 and walked 2 batters.  He threw 88 pitches, 54 strikes.  Right handed Zach Sirek of Minneapolis relieved Zimmerman and went 3 2/3 innings, giving up 3 hits, 3 runs all earned, walked 5 and struck out 5.  Sirek tallied 92 pitches, 46 strikes. The Orioles brought a player in to pitch not listed on their roster to try and keep the game tied in the bottom of the ninth and he gave up two walks.  Sirek took the loss for New Prague.

Orioles pitchers finished the game with 9 walks given up including the game tying run and winning run scoring on walks.

The Orioles will be the #3 seed from Region 3C in the State Amateur Baseball Tournament hosted this year by New Prague, Shakopee and Jordan.

After the New Prague 5-1 lead Faribault scored a run in the third, 2 in the fourth and one in the fifth to tie the game.  The Orioles went ahead on a two run single in the sixth inning right after it looked like Lane had a strikeout that would have ended the inning.  But a couple of close pitches with New Prague on the mound in the ninth also didn't go their way.

The Lakers Dylan Valentyn nearly celebrated his 24th birthday with a walk off home run.  The left fielder kept back peddling and made the catch a couple of feet from the fence.

Blake Langerud had three hits, 2 RBI and coaxed a walk in the ninth.  Ryan Archambault had a pair of hits and RBI and Helgeson had two hits in the game.  Both teams had 11 hits according to the Laker scorebook.  New Prague left 11 runners on base and Faribault 7.  The Orioles finished the game with 3 errors and the Lakers book had 3 errors for their team.

The game in Veseli Friday night starts at 8:00 p.m.  If New Market wins the Muskies win the Region 3C Tournament and don't play the opening weekend of the State Amateur Tournament.  If Faribault wins the two teams play in New Market at 2:00 p.m. Sunday for the top spot and the loser would be the #2 seed out of Region 3C.

Faribault Lakers After Walk Off Walk in Final Home Game of 2018. Photo by Gordy Kosfeld