The Faribault Falcons fastpitch softball team has been on a roll this postseason winning three elimination bracket games to get to play for the title.

The Falcons have outscored their last three opponents 30-6, Faribault opened the Section 1AAA Tournament with a #6 seed and defeated #3 Northfield in Raiders country 3-2 in 8 innings.

#2 seed Stewartville scored a thrilling 5-4 walk-off victory over the Falcons in the next contest sending Faribault to the elimination bracket.

In that bracket the Falcons defeated Byron 10-2 to send the Bears into hibernation, then clubbed Red Wing 9-2 to clip the Wingers season before downing Stewartville 11-2 to declaw the Tigers and get back to the championship bracket where they will play Winona Thursday, May 30, 2024 at 5:00 p.m. in Todd Park in Austin.

Faribault has to win two games to get to state while Winona needs one victory.

Tuesday the Falcons flew away from the Red Wing Wingers 9-2 before scoring an 11-2 victory over Stewartville.

Against Red Wing, Faribault clubbed 14 hits while the Wingers managed 5 hits off Rylee Sietsema, senior.  The righty tallied 13 strikeouts, allowed 2 walks while throwing 122 pitches, 74 strikes.

The Falcons had 4 doubles and a triple in the game.  Sietsema  had 3 hits, 2 RBI, Amanda Cullen, sophomore, 3 hits including a double and triple with 1 RBI, Emma Minnick, senior, clubbed 2 hits including a double for 2 RBI, Jamie Adamek, junior added 2 hits including a double, Olivia Smith, senior, had 2 hits including a double and 1 RBI.

In the Stewartville re-match the hitting parade continued with 15 hits for Faribault, 9 by the Tigers.

Adamek collected 3 hits, 3 RBI, Smith 3 hits, 1 RBI, Cullen 3 hits, 1 RBI, Grace Brazil, junior, 2 hits including a double, 1 RBI, Amira Williams, freshman 2 hits, 1 RBI. Reagan Drengenberg, senior, stole 2 bases against Stewartville and one in the Red Wing game.

Sietsema threw 121 pitches, 77 strikes while fanning 8 Tigers batters and walked 1 while scattering 9 hits,

Winona (18-4) has been in the state rankings all season and defeated Stewartville 6-4 to send them to the elimination bracket to face Faribault.

The Falcons (13-11) have a team batting average of .304 going into the title (they hope) contests.  Faribault is averaging just under 9 hits per game, 5.7 runs per contest (with multiple ranked teams in the Big 9 Conference) this season.

The Falcons have 44 extra base hits including 33 doubles, 8 triples, 3 home runs.  They are also 26 of 27 in stolen bases.

Sietsema has pitched 149 of 154 2/3 innings, allowing 158 hits, 46 earned runs with a 2.161 ERA.  Opponents are batting .248. She has 167 strikeouts, 67 walks, 8 hit batters.

In Section 1A Blooming Prairie got by Wabasha-Kellogg 5-4 to stay in the winner's bracket.  In the elimination bracket Hayfield rolled over Kenyon-Wanamingo 10-0 to end their season,

Wabasha-Kellogg then defeated the Vikings 9-4 to earn a trip back to Austin Thursday.  The Falcons have to win two games to advance, Awesome Blossoms one win to go to the State Tournament next week in North Mankato.

Section 1AA Randolph pitcher Carter Raymond has not allowed a single run in their 3 wins after receiving a first round bye for their #1 seed.

The Rockets defeated Cannon Falls 10-0, Zumbrota-Mazeppa 10-0 and St. Charles    9-0.  Elimination bracket play saw Caledonia edge Cotter 1-0, then sent the St. Charles Saints marching home with a 7-2 win to advance to a showdown with Randolph on Thursday, May 30, 2024.

The Warriors were the #2 seed, coming into the tournament with two losses.  The Rockets are undefeated.

Section 1AAAA winner's bracket action had New Prague blank Owatonna 4-0 to keep the Trojans in the championship hunt.  Farmington ended Lakeville North's season 4-1 before the top seed Tigers rolled by Owatonna 10-0.

Farmington and New Prague play 5:00 p.m. Thursday, May 30, 2024.  The Tigers need two wins, Trojans one win to advance to state.

Section 2A United South Central #2 seed goes up against top seed New Ulm Cathedral Thursday, May 30, 2024 at Caswell Park in North Mankato.  The Greyhounds have not lost to a Class A school this season.

The Rebels squeaked by Soringfield 1-0 then downed Martin County West 3-1 to get out of the elimination bracket.  USC must win twice Thursday, Cathedral once to advance to state.

Section 2AA  top two seeds Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial and Belle Plaine collide for the state tournament berth.  The Knights need one win, Tigers two wins to advance.

Tuesday Jordan defeated Le Sueur-Henderson 7-6 before falling to Belle Plaine 10-0 setting up the final matchup Thursday, May 30, 2024 at Caswell Park in North Mankato.

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Gallery Credit: Meg Dowdy

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