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Belgrade marches into title round at Class A state Legion tournament

Belgrade Bandits State A Tournament
Posted at 12:00 AM, Jul 29, 2023

LAUREL — Two teams — Belgrade and the Billings Blue Jays — were undefeated going into the third round of the play at the Class A Legion state tournament on Friday.

Both teams stayed alive because of the double elimination bracket, but they had a lot to play for as the winner will automatically advance to the championship game.

Belgrade 10, Billings Blue Jays 4

After an hour and a half delay, most in part due to inclement weather, the No. 2 seed out of the East, the Billings Blue Jays, took on the 1 seed out of the South, the Belgrade Bandits. And Belgrade was ready to go right away in the top of the first, scoring five runs. Olson had the first run of the game off of a single from Aidan Kulbeck.

Wyatt Russell continued the momentum with a two-RBI single to send in Keenan Kraft and Kulbeck.

Belgrade capitalized on its 5-0 lead in the third and tacked on four more runs. The first of that inning would come from Cam Ueland off Collin Delph's single. Delph would score off of Kraft's hit a few plays later.

Billings found some momentum of its own in the fourth, Camden Wilson scored off of Caden Clifford's hit. The Blue Jays tacked on three more runs in this inning to make the score 9-4 going into the fourth.

The final run of the game came from Belgrade from Gavin Waters, batted in by Ryas Olson.

Belgrade wins 10-4 and automatically qualifies for a championship round on Sunday. It will play Glacier at 7 p.m. on Saturday. Billings will play Laurel at 4 in a loser-out contest.

Glacier 13, Lethbridge 4, loser out

In the first game of the day, the 1 seed out of the West, the Glacier Twins, took on the 2 seed out of the North, the Lethbridge Miners in the first loser-out game of the day.

Despite the large win, it was Lethbridge out of the gate first to tack on runs. They scored three runs in the top of the first, and one more in the third. Those runs came from Alexander Westlund, Fawkes Bruinsma and Ty Mabin.

Lethbridge would find their groove in the bottom of the fourth down 4-0 and score an impressive eight runs. Kellen Kroger and Tristan Butts started the scoring for the Twins, which came from the Dayne Tu 2 RBI single.

Glacier would extend their lead in the sixth and tacked on five more runs. They clinch in the top of the seventh.
They'll play Belgrade on Saturday at 7 p.m.

Laurel 7, Butte 5, loser out

In the second game of the day, the 1 seed out of the East, the Laurel Dodgers, took on the 2 seed out of the South, the defending state champion Butte Miners.

Laurel scored the first two runs of the game in the bottom of the third, but Butte was quick to respond with two of their own in the top of the fourth.

It was a two-RBI single from Rye Doherty of the Miners that sent in Kevin Donaldson and Cade Stajcar.

However, Laurel took back their lead in the bottom of the inning 3-2. Maverick Hoppman scored on a wild pitch.

Butte would tie the score once again in the top of the fifth, but the bats were hot for Laurel in the bottom of the inning. They took a 6-3 lead that grew to 7-4 by the end of the sixth.

Despite two more runs from Butte, Laurel clinched. Laurel will play the Blue Jays at 4 p.m. in a loser-out game Saturday.

Butte's season ended, will not repeat its title.