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Perham Buzz win KLN Championship

A strong weekend of pitching and timely hitting helped the Perham Buzz capture the first ever KLN Classic Championship on June 23 and June 24 at Krueger Field in Perham. The Buzz used strong performances in all three wins when they disposed of Osakis, Park Rapids and Breckenridge.

It was an old school duel between Perham and Breckenridge. Jace Kovash and Mitch Porter were locked in against each other. However, neither pitcher factored in the decision as it was Perham earning a 4-3 win in 10 innings.

Breckenridge struck first against Kovash with an RBI single by EJ Engen. Kovash settled in after the first and went five innings. He allowed three hits, one walk and one hit batter. He struck out two batters before giving way to the bullpen.

Perham struck in the fourth. Kovash singled and moved to second on an error. Roo Schmitz followed with a double to even the game at one.

Schmitz took over in relief for Perham and was effective in his four innings of work. He allowed two runs. He struck out one and walked one. The two runs he gave up came in extra innings when the tournament went to the California Tiebreaker, with each inning starting with a guy on second base.

The teams remained tied until the ninth when a pair of bunts by Breckenridge led to a run. Perham answered back in the ninth when Max Tostenson roped a single to score Maddux Kovash.

Breckenridge snuck a run across in the 10th inning after capitalizing on a Perham error, but Perham wasted little time in the 10th. Instead of playing for the one run, Perham played for the big inning and it paid off. Jace Kovash atoned for an error at second when he ripped a single down the first base line, scoring Rooney. A bunt by Nick Lindberg moved Kovash into scoring position. An intentional walk to Roo Schmitz put two guys for Perham. Back-to-back walks to Maddux Kovash and Carter Mulcahy ended the game.

Jace Kovash and Tostenson finished with two hits each, while Lindberg, Schmitz, Dawson Stevens, Mulcahy and Andy Newville had hits in the win.

Dawson Stevens went four innings and Lindberg closed out as Perham opened with a 3-1 win over Osakis. All three runs came in the second inning when Noah Rooney doubled home two and Jace Kovash reached on an error, which allowed another run to score. That would be enough for Stevens and Lindberg as they shut down Osakis, holding them to three hits.

Jace Kovash, Lindberg and Josh Jeziorski each had two hits and drove in two runs as Perham throttled Park Rapids Area 12-2 in the semifinals. Schmitz, Stevens and Newville added single hits in the win. Maddux Kovash went the distance and allowed two runs on eight hits.

Jason Groth

 Groth is a Minnesota Newspaper Association award-winning Sports Editor of the Perham Focus and the Wadena Pioneer Journal. Groth worked in Grand Rapids as the Sports Director at KOZY/KMFY radio for two years and prior to that he was the Sports Editor/Writer for the Grand Rapids Herald-Review for seven years. 

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