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Martins sweep Irish in regional semifinal series, earn state bid

MILROY — The Fairmont Martins guaranteed themselves a second consecutive bid to the Minnesota Class ‘C’ state amateur baseball tournament via Friday night’s lopsided triumph at Irish yard.

Jon Traetow generated a pivotal single for two of his game-best five RBIs amid an eight-run offensive outburst during the top of the eighth inning to power No. 1-seeded Fairmont to a 19-11 landslide win over the No. 4-seeded Milroy Irish in Game 2 of their best-of-3 Region 13C series in Milroy.

The Martins (20-2), who captured Game 1 on the strength of an 8-2 victory over the Irish on Wednesday night at Herb Wolf Field, advances to the best-of-3 regional championship series with the two-game semifinal sweep.

Fairmont will play host to the winner between the No. 2-seeded Luverne Redbirds and the No. 6-seeded Hadley Buttermakers at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday night at Herb Wolf Field in Fairmont. The top three teams in the regional qualify for the state tournament.

The Buttermakers, who pocketed Game 1 by a 4-3 decision Wednesday night, play host to the Redbirds in Game 2 at 2 p.m. today in Hadley.

Ahead 10-9 after seven complete innings, Fairmont erupted for eight runs in the top of the eighth to put the game out of reach.

Eli Anderson collected his third hit of the game before Dalen Keltgen reached on catcher’s interference.

“That was a huge call because it erased a double play,” said Martins player/coach Levi Becker.

Blake Crawmer legged out a bunt for a hit before Jack Waletich delivered a sacrifice fly to plate Anderson for an 11-9 lead.

Derek Shoen reached on a fielder’s choice before Traetow drilled a two-run single. An Irish error on Becker’s hit kept the at-bat alive and Adam Schmidt smacked the last of his two doubles for one RBI.

Ironically, Anderson, who started the inning, walked before two more runs scored when Keltgen’s ball was mishandled. Crawmer singled and Waletich drove home another run for a 18-11 lead after the top of the eighth.

Traetow then collected his third hit of the night — a solo HR in the ninth — to finish with five RBIs.

Tyler Tennyson delivered another three-hit performance for the Martins. Tennyson produced three RBIs — two on a fourth-inning HR and one on a seventh-inning double that tied the game at 7-all.

Shoen generated two RBIs on three hits, including a towering solo HR in the top of the sixth for Fairmont.

Becker and Keltgen each finished with two hits, while Schmidt produced three RBIs.

Shoen pitched the first three innings for Fairmont, Schmidt handled the next three frames and Collin Lovell — a draftee from the Windom Pirates — closed the final three innings on the mound.

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