Cold Spring’s Nick Bell Classic didn’t disappoint

Posted on July 21, 2014 by Erik Steffenson

This past weekend in Cold Spring was the annual Nick Bell Classic, which consisted of six teams that played three exhibition games each. It took in the format of two games Friday, four games Saturday and three games Sunday afternoon. The teams were the Cold Spring Springers, Minneapolis Cobras, Brainerd Bees, Marshall A’s, Austin Greyhounds and Sauk Rapids Cyclones. Here is how each team fared:

Cold Spring Springers (2-1) – The Springers kicked off the tournament on Friday evening versus Marshall. Zach Femrite was dominant on the mound, but gave up a grand slam in the top of the seventh for Marshall to tie it 4-4. The game went ten innings when Jack Arnold hit a walk off single for the 5-4 victory.

Femrite pitched all ten innings for 156 pitches while striking out ten. On Saturday, the Springers played Austin with Justin Thompson pitching. The Springers had a 3-0 lead in the fourth inning when Joe Dempsey and Drew VanLoy hit back-to-back two-RBI doubles to make it 7-0. Thompson stayed strong the rest of the way for a shutout allowing only six hits while striking out five. Joe Dempsey went 4-for-4 with a double and four RBIs to contribute to the 7-0 victory.

On Sunday, Cold Spring faced the Minneapolis Cobras with Reed Pfannenstein on the hill. Ryan Holthaus got things going with an RBI single in the first inning. Pfannenstein got the first two guys out in the second inning before the Cobras rallied for six runs that inning and scored four more the next inning. In the fourth, Ben Griffin hit a two-RBI double and was driven in the next play by a Holthaus single. The Springers would get one more run and lost 10-5.

Marshall A’s (2-1) – Marshall opened up the tournament against Cold Spring and ran into a four-run deficit after the fifth inning. Andrew Kinney was the savior of the day as he hit grand slam to right off of Springer’s ace Zach Femrite to tie the game and send it to extras where they gave up a walk off single to lose 5-4.

On Saturday, Marshall faced Sauk Rapids with Travis McGlaflin on the mound. Marshall struck first in the third inning scoring three runs on an RBI single from Kinney and a two-RBI single from Austin Stubbs. Sauk Rapids responded with two runs and then the A’s roared with four runs the next inning. The Cyclones had a four-run sixth inning to make it a 7-7 tie heading into the seventh inning. The A’s scored three runs to make it 10-7 lead. Zach Olson came in relief and tossed a scoreless seventh inning to solidify the 10-7 victory.

Marshall’s ace Steve Wehr pitched the final game of the tournament against Brainerd. Zach Olson hit a two-run double early in the game to make it 3-0 through three innings. Steve Wehr was solid throughout the game allowing only one run as he pitched all seven innings for the A’s 4-1 victory.

Minneapolis Cobras (3-0) – The Cobras were the only team to win all three of their games. They started off on Friday night against Sauk Rapids and had a quick 3-0 lead after an inning and a half. A sloppy second inning led to six runs for the Cyclones to make it 6-3. The Cobras responded with three runs in the third, three more in the fourth, three more in the fifth, and four more in the sixth and held the Cyclones to no more runs as Minneapolis won 16-6 in six innings.

On Saturday, the Cobras faced Brainerd with Jon-Eric Urseth pitching for the Cobras. Minneapolis got five runs quickly and had a 5-0 lead after three innings. Urseth coasted the rest of the way for a shutout allowing only six hits while tossing five strikeouts and no walks. The Cobras would go on to win 5-0.

On Sunday, Minneapolis led off the day with a game against Cold Spring. The Cobras got six runs with a two-out rally in the second inning and followed with four more in the third to have a 10-1 lead after three. John Wengenroth pitched three solid innings in relief allowing only one run on four hits. Mason Reinhart and Matt Borman were a combined 5-for-8 with six RBIs for the Cobras.

Sauk Rapids Cyclones (1-2) – The Cyclones played the Minneapolis Cobras first on Friday night. They were down 3-0 when they took advantage of two Cobra errors to score six runs and take a 6-3 lead into the third when the Cobras got three runs to tie the game. Jef Hille came in relief in the fourth inning and got roughed up allowing nine hits and ten runs in three innings of relief. The Cyclones did not score any more runs past the second inning and lost 16-6.

Sauk Rapids faced Marshall on Saturday night with Tyler Bjork on the mound. The A’s knocked Bjork around in the third and fourth innings scoring seven runs total from those innings. The Cyclones were trailing 7-3 in the bottom of the sixth when Andy Henkemeyer hit a triple with the bases loaded and was driven in by a Bo Schmitz single the next play to tie the game. The A’s would tag three more runs on Bjork in the seventh as Sauk Rapids fell 0-2 with a 10-7 loss to Marshall.

Sauk Rapids played their last game against Austin on Sunday afternoon. The Cyclones led off the game with four extra base hits in the first five at bats and resulted with five runs to jump to a 5-0 lead after the first inning. The Greyhounds responded with four runs in the bottom of the second to make it a one run ball game. Sauk Rapids scored one run in the third and one in the fourth and held off the Hounds the rest of the way for an 8-5 win. Andy Henkemeyer pitched six innings for the Cyclones allowing five runs on six hits and six walks. He also went 3-for-5 with an RBI.

Austin Greyhounds (1-2) – Austin started play on Saturday facing the Springers. Zach Schara got the nod for the Greyhounds and beat up early allowing seven runs in 3 1/3 innings. Joe Huffman came in relief and was very solid for Austin. Henry Fleek was the only Hound with multiple hits as Justin Thompson held the Austin bats in check as they lost 7-0 to Cold Spring.

They played the very next game against the Brainerd Bees. After two quick outs, the Greyhounds had five consecutive hits to score three runs to start the game. The Bees responded with three runs themselves to tie it 3-3 after the first inning. Austin scored on an Andy Swank groundout to take the lead in the second. In the fourth inning, Joe Kroc and Matt Cano had back-to-back RBI singles and Kroc would later score to make it 7-3 after four innings. Alex Kasak would only allow one more run for the Greyhounds as he went the full seven innings allowing only four runs on 11 hits for the 7-4 Greyhound victory.

On Sunday, Austin played Sauk Rapids and fell behind early after the Cyclones scored 5-0 in the first inning. Austin would respond with a four run second inning thanks to a two RBI single by Joe Kroc. The Greyhounds tried to rally late but could only score one more run as they fell 8-5 to the Cyclones.

Brainerd Bees (0-3) – Brainerd also started tournament play on Saturday against Austin. After the Greyhounds scored three runs in the top of the first, Tyler Lenz hit a two-RBI triple and was driven in the next play by a Burrell Flanagan single to tie it 3-3. Austin went ahead 4-3 the next inning and scored three more runs in the fourth to make it 7-3. Tom Fairbanks hit an RBI double in the fifth inning to make it 7-4, but he and Tim Martin were left stranded and the Bees lost 7-4.

The Bees played the next game against the Minneapolis Cobras. Burrell Flanagan was banged around early allowing five runs on five hits as he was taken out in the third inning. The bats went silent the rest of the way as Tim and Joel Martin combined allowed one hit and one walk with no runs the rest of the game. Joel Martin went 2-for-3 with two singles as the rest of the Bees only got four hits as they lost 5-0 to the Cobras.

In the final game of the tournament, the Bees were shut down by the A’s Steve Wehr as they only managed to get one run late in the game and fell 4-1 to finish 0-3 in the tournament.      

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