Post 14 will meet up with Minot in the opening roundOne year after missing the American Legion state Class A tournament by a technicality, Jamestown wasn’t about to let those fortunes repeat itself this season.
One year after missing the American Legion state Class A tournament by a technicality, Jamestown wasn’t about to let those fortunes repeat itself this season.
Post 14 went 2-2 at last weekend’s sectional tournament in Fargo to earn the No. 3 seed out of the East at this year’s state tournament, Jamestown’s first state tournament appearance since 2007.
“Last year was kind of unfortunate the way things happened,” said Post 14 coach Shane Schoeneberg. “We actually ended up going 3-2 in that (sectional) tournament and still didn’t make state, so we would have had to win four games to get in.”
Jamestown (14-26) was held out of last year’s state tournament because Wahpeton, who finished behind Post 14 in the state-qualifying tournament, was awarded a spot as the tournament hosts. But this year Jamestown got what it deserved — a spot in the state tournament.
“A lot of credit goes to the players,” Schoeneberg said. “Especially losing the very first game (at this year’s sectional tournament) our guys could have just kept their heads hanging, because obviously that’s not the way you want to start the tournament, but they bounced back and played really well against Grand Forks that same night.”
Post 14, after losing to Devils Lake 6-5 in the sectional opener, rebounded with a 7-6 win over Grand Forks to round out opening day play. Jamestown continued to pour on the offense the next day with an 18-6 shellacking of Devils Lake before losing to Fargo 16-3 to conclude the tournament.
“It’s really nice to not only make (the state tournament) but to also get the No. 3 seed,” said Schoeneberg. “I think we’re going to be ready to play (today).”
Jamestown has had it fair share of struggles this season, including an eight-game losing skid near the tail end of the regular season but Post 14 seems to be getting things rolling at the right time.
“It’s easy to stay positive when everything is going well but when bad things happen that’s when it gets tough,” Schoeneberg said. “I think the guys got tired of losing and they wanted to get things going. The time they go out to stretch and when we take the infield before the game starts, they look more and more positive. They are holding their heads high and they’re expecting to go out their and win.”
Post 14 has won four of its last eight games to punch its ticket to the state tournament but now the competition only gets tougher, beginning with Minot today at 2 p.m.
The Vistas swept Jamestown earlier in July to extend Post 14’s losing streak to eight games, but according to Schoeneberg, Jamestown is a different team than the last time the two teams met.
“Minot is a pretty good hitting ball club, so I’m hoping that whoever goes out there to take the mound keeps them off balance and gives our guys a shot,” said Schoeneberg. “I know our defense is going to make plays.”
The bats have also come alive as of late as well, combining for 38 hits in the last three games.
“The team is hitting the ball well and it’s at the right time of the year but it all starts on the mound,” Schoeneberg said. “My coach at Bismarck State, Len Stanley, always used to tell me, ‘It all starts on the mound. That’s the guy who sets the tone.’”
Schoeneberg said he was still undecided as to who will be throwing the first game for Post 14 but he stated that he is confident that whomever is out there will get the defense needed behind him to give Jamestown a chance to win.
The tournament is double elimination, so whether Post 14 wins or loses play will continue on Thursday. If Post 14 defeats Minot then Jamestown will play the winner of the West Fargo/Williston game, which will be played today at 11 a.m. If Post 14 loses then it will play the loser of the West Fargo/Williston game.
American Legion State Class A Baseball Tournament
At Municipal Ballpark, Bismarck, N.D.
Game 1: East No. 1 West Fargo vs. West No. 4 Williston, 11 a.m.
Game 2: West No. 2 Minot vs. East No. 3 Jamestown, 2 p.m.
Game 3: East No. 2 Fargo vs. West No. 3 Mandan, 5 p.m.
Game 4: West No. 1 Bismarck vs. East No. 4 Grand Forks, 8 p.m.
Game 5: Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 2, 11 a.m.
Game 6: Loser Game 3 vs. Loser Game 4, 2 p.m.
Game 7: Winner Game 1 vs. Winner Game 2, 5 p.m.
Game 8: Winner Game 3 vs. Winner Game 4, 8 p.m.
Game 9: Winner Game 6 vs. Loser Game 7, 1 p.m.
Game 10: Winner Game 5 vs. Loser Game 8, 4 p.m.
Game 11: Winner Game 7 vs. Winner Game 8, 7 p.m.
Game 12: Winner Game 9 vs. Loser Game 11, 1 p.m.
Game 13: Winner Game 10 vs. Winner Game 11, 4 p.m.
Game 14: Championship, Winner Game 12 vs. Winner Game 13, 1 p.m.
Game 15 (if necessary): Championship game 2, 4 p.m.
Sun sports writer David Griswold can be reached at (701) 952-8462 or by email at email@example.com