• SECTION 4: After throwing 120 pitches in a semifinal victory on Monday, Minnehaha Academy star pitcher John Pryor said his arm was ready to go had his team needed him Thursday at Midway Stadium. The way Nicholas Grachek was throwing though, Pryor never had to leave his spot at first base.
Grachek pitched a four-hit shutout, leading Minnehaha Academy to a 2-0 victory over St. Anthony in the championship and sending the Redhawks to their first state tournament berth.
“It was a little scary not having John in there,” said Redhawks coach Scott Glenn, adding that Pryor was set to pitch had St. Anthony forced a second game in the double-elimination tournament. “But Nick was great. He threw the ball really well, and we knew he could get it done.”
Grachek twice pitched his way out of tight spots. He got a Huskies batter to fly out with the bases loaded to end the second inning, and Minnehaha Academy got a bit of a break when a baserunner didn’t tag up on what would have been a tying run in the sixth.
“It was a tight game, but I didn’t have a doubt we were pulling that out,” Grachek said.
Eamonn Manion drove in the first run with a single in the bottom of the third, and Pryor tripled before scoring the final run in the sixth.
•?SECTION 7: After a one-year hiatus, Forest Lake is headed back to state. Jonathan Schmidt’s line-drive single in the bottom of the seventh inning scored Alexander Egle with the winning run as the Rangers edged Grand Rapids 4-3 for the championship. Forest Lake will be making its fourth state tournament appearance in the past five years. Grand Rapids won the section title a year ago.