American Legion baseball
The Browne Mountain Bandits pulled in American Legion AAA Baseball all-league selections.
But that didn’t get them past the first round of the state-qualifying playoffs.
Involved in a rugged first-round series with the Valley Cannons, the Bandits outscored and outhit their foe. But they lost twice by a run, 9-8 and 12-11, and won 10-6 in extra innings.
The Cannons ultimately beat the Blue Devils to earn the state berth.
But Cannons coach Robin Lund said he was more worried about the initial series.
“It was really emotional. In fact, it was way more nerve-racking than the championship series,” he said.
“We played awful against them (the Bandits) all year. They actually owned us.”
Small wonder. Six Bandits were named to the first all-league team and two others were on second team.
First-teamers were shortstop Aaron Fryer, pitchers Chris McMurtrey and Sean Ruscio, catcher Brett Haiar, outfielder Ken Beeler and designated hitter Josh Sheffield.
On second team were outfielder Jeff Dahmen and third baseman Andy Dunham.
Sheffield was second in hitting with a .480 average. He led the league with five triples, was second with eight home runs and third with 46 runs scored.
Fryer was fourth in league with a .430 average. Beeler hit .400, Dunham .390, Haiar .380 and Dahmen .340.
Also making all-league from the South Side was Royals second-team outfielder Jeff Knutson.
Royals teammates Nathan Blum and Kurtis Broderson hit .341 and .326 respectively.
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