Preview: Rocori Baseball In State Championship [AUDIO]
What: Rocori Spartans vs Mounds View Mustangs, Class AAA Baseball State Championship Game
Where: Target Field, Minneapolis
Time: 4:00 pm
Radio: AM 1390 The Fan
Smartphone: Radio Pup application
The Rocori Spartans are playing in their first state title game since 2010 Monday when they take on Mounds View at Target Field. The Spartans beat Delano 3-0 to win the title in 2010.
The Spartans entered the state tourney with a record of 16-8. Rocori had lost four out of five games before rattling off seven straight wins to advance to Monday's title game.
Rocori upset #3 seeded Lakeville North on Thursday to advance to the semifinal game. The Spartans trailed the Panthers 2-0 heading into the top of the fifth inning when they rallied for three runs to take the lead and eventually the win.
Reed Pfannenstein pitched a complete game in the opening round for Rocori, and first baseman Austin Athmann paced the offense with three hits.
The Spartans fell behind early to #2 seed Minnetonka but took advantage of five Skipper errors en route to a 4-1 win. Head coach Jeff Illies says he was proud of the way his team handled early adversity to come back for the win,
This time is was Jake Hennen going the distance for Rocori, and the stage was set for a championship showdown with Mounds View.
The Mounds View Mustangs were given the #4 seed in the 2013 tournament and began their run with a walk-off, 2-1 win over Forest Lake at Midway Stadium on Thursday.
The Mustangs then went on to upset #1 seed Coon Rapids on Friday by a 9-4 final score. The Cardinals were coming off of a Logan Shore no-hitter against Wayzata in the opening game.
The Mustangs won third place at state in 2000.
More from Illies:
Coach Illies says that tradition plays a large role in how the Spartans approach the game.