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Cottage Grove VFW baseball ends season with 15-14 playoff loss

Cottage Grove ended the season with a loss to Mendota Blue in the VFW opening playoff game last week.

Post 8752 fell to fourth-seed Mendota 15-14 on Thursday, July 18. Cottage Grove coach John McGowan said his team outhit Mendota 15-11 but left 12 runners on base.

"Getting hits at the right time is huge in baseball," McGowan said. "We just didn't time up our hits as well as they did that night."

Jake Lopez got the start on Thursday, giving up 11 runs on eight hits and six walks while striking out five over four innings pitched.

Jeb Melson came in for an inning and gave up three runs on one hit, four walks and 3 strikeouts. Joe Knutson finished the game by going two innings. He gave up one run on two hits, no walks and two strikeouts.

"Our pitchers did fine on Thursday," McGowan said. "Both teams just swung the bats really well that night. I'm extremely please with how our boys played. We could have given up, but we battled until the end, scoring five runs in the last two innings to tie the score, but gave up the game winner in the bottom of the seventh."

McGowan said Anthony Buettner had a great day at the plate, going 4-5 with two singles, two doubles, a pair of runs scored and three RBIs. Brad Petersen went 3-3 with two singles, a double, two walks, three runs scored and three RBIs. Jeb Melson added to the offense as well, going 3-5 with three singles, two runs scored and 3 RBIs.

Prior to the playoff game, Post 8752 fell 5-4 to Mahtomedi Blue on Tuesday, July 16. Cottage Grove was up 4-3 heading into the bottom of the sixth, but Mahtomedi scored twice off starter Luke Longmuir to seal the win. Longmuir gave up five runs on six hits and had three strikeouts and no walks.

Cottage Grove ended the season at 6-14.

"This is a good group of players with a lot of potential," McGowan said. "If and when they put some time in the offseason, they will only get better. I'm very excited to coach these boys at the varsity level over the next two years."

Scott Wente

Scott Wente has been editor at the South Washington County Bulletin since 2011. He worked as a reporter at other Forum Communications newspapers from 2003 to 2011.

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