The Delano Athletics moved closer to securing a #1 seed from Region 12C for the upcoming Minnesota state amatuer baseball touranment with a 12-9 victory over the Howard Lake Orphans on Friday evening.
Delano jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning with 3 hits. Kevin Jaunich led off with a single and advanced to second on an error. Toby Hanson grounded out to second base and advanced Jaunich to third and Joey Althoff followed up with an RBI single, scoring Jaunich.
The Athletics would score another run in the second inning to take a 2-0 lead when Joey Althoff returned to the plate with his second RBI single of the game.
Howard Lake would rally in the third inning and take a 3-2 lead, but Delano responded with five runs in the top of the fourth inning off starting Howard Lake pitcher, Shane Khan to take a 7-3 lead.
The Athletics would add another run in the fifth inning to take 8-3 lead when Toby Hanson drew a lead off walk and stole second base. Joey Althoff drove Hanson in with his third RBI single of the evening.
The Orphans chipped away at the Athletics lead in the sixth with a pair of runs and cut the lead to 8-5.
In the seventh inning, the Athletics would score again in the top of the sixth and seventh innings to take a 10-5 lead.
In the bottom of the eighth inning the Orphans came storming back with a 4-run rally, keyed by a 3-run homerun by Eric Schreifels and cut the Athletics lead to 10-9, before closer Trevor Jaunich came into the game to shut the door for his first save of the postseason, pitching the final out of the eighth inning and a scoreless ninth inning. Jaunich got a little cushion when the Athletics plated a pair of runs in the top of the ninth to take a 12-9 lead.
The Athletics are now one win away from securing the #1 seed and will play next again on Sunday at 1:00 p.m. at Delano Municipal Baseball Park.