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Glenn Pursley, Published June 06 2013

New York Mills prevails in Class 1A, Section 6 baseball title game

FERGUS FALLS, Minn. – There’s two ways to deal with the looming threat of a second championship game. You can either worry about it, or forget about it. New York Mills chose the latter, and it paid off with the team’s third consecutive Minnesota state tournament berth.

NYM junior Tyler Patron had a two-run double to pace the Eagles to an 8-1 win over Ortonville in the Class 1A, Section 6 championship game Thursday at DeLagoon Park.

“To be honest with you, I didn’t even talk about playing a second game, and the players never mentioned it to me,” Eagles head coach Chris Bushinger said. “We felt like taking care of business (Thursday) and not having to worry about it (Friday).”

Batting in the top of the inning, the Eagles wasted no time.

Patron’s double in the first sailed over Quincy Swenson’s head in center field and scored Nick Kupfer and Brandon Kupfer for a two-run lead.

Dustin Gaudette hit a sacrifice fly and Dustin Kraft had an outfield single to push NYM ahead 4-0.

Kraft finished with two hits and three stolen bases, and Patron had two hits and scored two runs.

“It feels great,” Kraft said. “We’ve been here three times now, and it feels good to get the job done. Once we get a rally going, we’re usually good then.”

Also starting on the mound, Patron gave up six hits, but allowed only one run and stranded seven Ortonville runners on base, four in scoring position.

The only Trojans run came in response to the Eagles’ four runs in the first. Nathan Nelson drove in shortstop Tony Schake on single to left-center field.

“It feels pretty good to help my team out,” Patron said. “I’ve been in a slump, but it really gives you confidence to have a good defense behind you.”

The Eagles hope to shake the first-game jitters at this year’s state tournament and improve on last season’s fifth-place finish.

“Our ultimate goal would be to win a state championship,” Bushinger said. “The last two years that we’ve been there, we’ve lost that first game. This year that’s what we want to achieve.”

NYM 403 100 0– 8 7 0

O 100 000 0– 1 6 2

T. Patron and A. Patron. Blake, Cloos (3) and Athey. W¬–T. Patron. L¬–Blake.

Forum reporter Glenn Pursley can be reached at (701) 241-5549.