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Rebels' road ends in consolation final

Dwight Cadwell

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Making their third trip to the Minnesota State High School League state girls softball tournament last week, the Rebels were hoping to make a run at the state title after being close the previous two years. Those hopes were dashed in the state quarterfinals by Russell-Tyler-


In their first-ever state tournament appearance, the Knights shut down the Rebels in a 10-0 10-run victory last Wednesday night in Mankato. RTR scored four runs in the bottom of the first inning and added four more in the second inning to ensure the win.

The Rebels managed five hits in the loss, two coming off the bat of Hallie Klavu. ML/WR wasn't able to pick up a key hit when they had bases runners in place to score or advance. The Rebels also aided the Knights with three errors in the loss.

After the loss to RTR, the Rebels dropped into the consolation bracket where the Rebels faced the Mustangs of Kelliher/Northome with the chance to play later in the day Thursday for the State Class A Consolation Championship.

The Mustangs jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning. The score would remain 1-0 until the bottom of the fourth inning, when the Rebels scored 10 times to take a 10-1 lead, on their way to a 12-2 10-run victory.

The Rebels Madison Wasche started the inning with a double, Lilly Kahara followed with a bunt single and an infield single by Elise Leino loaded the bases with nobody out. Bells Emmons then took a four-pitch walk to bring in Wasche from third and the game was tied at 1-1.

The Mustangs helped the Rebels with two errors and two wild pitches in the inning. Wasche added her second double and Kahara had another single, each driving two runs for ML/WR. The Rebels sent 15 batters to the plate as they scored 10 runs on nine hits in the inning.

Wasche, and Kahara picked up their third and fourth hits of the game, respectively, in the sixth inning and a walk to Kara Lemieux ended the match up with the 10-run win.

The win over the Mustangs then saw the Rebels meet up with Red Lake Falls in the consolation title game, but the Eagles came away with a 2-0 win and the consolation title. Makenzie Hoffman pitched a one hitter in the loss while striking out six.

The Eagles twice took advantage of walks, passed balls and mental mistakes in the win. Like they did in the quarterfinal loss, the Rebels could not come up with a timely hit against Red Lake Falls.

Madison Wasche and Lilly Kahara both finished 5-9 in the state tournament, and five players all had two RBIs.

"It was a learning experience for our team," Rebels head coach Kelly Goeb said. "We came into the state tournament with high hopes, but it showed what we need to continue to work on to get better for next year."

Goeb called RTR a good team with a great pitcher.

"I thought we had chances in that one, and also in the Red Lake Falls game where we only allowed one hit but lost," Goeb said. "I am so proud of this team. These girls worked hard and we will get prepared for next year starting very soon."

The Rebels should be back and strong again next year, but the Rebels will have to replace graduating seniors Lilly Kahara and Megan Hattenberger.