Although the Hazen American Legion baseball team had a full roster this go round, their end results were much like 2008’s Section 8 Tournament. The Astros fell in the first round, then rebounded with a dominant second game but failed to get past a third contest.
It’s a bad habit that keeps reccurring for the Hazen American Legion team, one no one can seem to put a finger on. But one thing is for sure, no matter the amount of the lead, any game is within reach of a loss. The Astros proved the theory once more this past week as they allowed a 6-4 lead to slip between their fingers as Washburn claimed the 7-6 walk off win in the seventh inning.
American Legion baseball established the rule that a game is concluded if a team has a 10-run lead after five innings of play. It was designed to be merciful to teams that are considered unable to return from such a deficit. It almost appears for the Hazen Astros team, however, to be more of a goal than a merciful concession.
Justin Heldstab is in his final year of eligibility for American Legion baseball. The former Mandan player has led the Hazen team as their number two pitcher in the rotation this season. But his younger brother Jeremy is looking to keep the Heldstab tradition strong in the Astros bullpen.
Over the course of a season, coaches try to ingrain habits into their players so their body is ready to just instinctively react when a situation calls for it. Unfortunately for the Hazen American Legion baseball team, bad habits are learned the same way – and often are much more difficult to break.
The third annual Jeff Gustafson Memorial Hockey Camp attracted 75 players to the Hazen All-Seasons Arena last week. But besides lacing up their skates and scoring goals, campers were reminded of the man who gave his passion and smile to continuing the support of hockey in the community.
Baseball is a daily game. Each inning can change, every pitch could be different than the last. That’s what head coach Mike Lorenzano is banking on as the Hazen American Legion team needs to make a few adjustments. After a little schedule rearranging last week, the Astros move their record to 1-5, after dropping a pair at home to Washburn last Thursday.
Last year Mike Lorenzano faced several headaches in his first year as head coach of the Hazen American legion team. Short on available players, the Astros were forced to forfeit a few too many games coming down to the end of the regular season because their roster was stretched too thin between legion and Babe Ruth leagues.
Brothers Brent and Brian Sorensen are creatures of the same habits. When it comes to track the pair run almost identical patterns, from the way they warm up to the way they cross the finish line. But now the younger sibling can finally have his name one place higher in the school record books. Brian, who graduated in 2008, set the 400-meter dash record for Hazen High School during his senior season as he crossed the finish line in 50.13 seconds. Last Saturday, with near perfect sprinting conditions, Brent thrust his chest over the finish line one-tenth of a second faster than his brother to set a new standard for Bison sprinters. The new record to beat in the 400 is 50.03.