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Albion Tigers
Matt Towns
608-884-3155
510 St Joseph Circle
Edgerton, Wisconsin
53534
 
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Monday, September 12
SEVENTY YEARS IN THE MAKING... TIGERS ARE CHAMPIONS!

The Albion Tigers mounted a furious three-run rally in the eighth inning on Sunday to defeat the Wiota Indians 6-5 and clinch their first-ever league title.  The win gave Albion a clean sweep of the round-robin Championship Series, and set off a celebration in Albion Park that won't be soon forgotten.

It wasn't roses all day for the Tigers, though.  After Adam Gregory's three-run double gave Albion an early lead, the Indians fought back and took a 5-3 lead after the top of the eighth.  However, Kris Agnew's leadoff triple was followed by an RBI from Tyler Oren to make it 5-4.  Oren was bunted to second, Adam Gregory walked, and Kyle Johnson reached on an infield single to load the bases with one out.  Lars Olstad and Lucas Gregory followed with consecutive RBI singles to drive home the tying and go-ahead runs, making the score 6-5 Albion headed into the ninth.

Wiota catcher and leadoff man Mitch Marty carried the potential tying to third base with two outs, but reliever Lucas Gregory induced a fly ball to rightfield for the third out.  Albion finishes the season with a 18-3 record in HTL play, and a 24-6 overall record. 

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TIGERS PULL WITHIN ONE WIN OF THE CROWN!! -- The Albion Tigers defeated the Sauk Prairie Twins 4-1 on Sunday to go to 2-0 in the Home Talent League's Grand Championship Series, and are now one win away from their first league crown in their 70-year history!!!  One more win, next Sunday against Wiota at Albion Park, will do the job!

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EASTMAN, DEEGAN LEAD TIGERS TO FINAL FOUR WIN!!! -- Josh Eastman continued his postseason dominance on the mound for the Albion Tigers, shutting down the Eastern Section Champion Monona Braves on a humid Sunday afternoon at Albion Park.  The Southeast Section Champion Tigers posted a 4-1 decision over the Braves, as Eastman tossed 8 1/3 innings to earn his third win in as many playoff games.  The Tiger righty scattered four singles, walked only one, struck out five, and gave up one unearned run. 

In three postseason starts, Eastman is 3-0 and has only allowed one earned run in 21 1/3 innings.

After going 2x3 at the plate as the Tiger's DH, Lucas Gregory went to the mound in the ninth inning with one out to relieve Eastman.  With two runners on and the tying run at the plate, Gregory got Monona rightfielder Collin Crim to ground into a double-play to end the game.

The Tigers offense grabbed a run early against Braves starter Corey Schmidt.  Aaron Laskowski doubled to lead off the first inning. Tyler Oren reached on an infield single, and a throwing error sent Laskowski home.  Following a single by Braves centerfielder Jordan Walker in the top of the fourth inning, a Tiger error allowed an unearned run to tie the game at 1-1.

The Tigers quickly stole the lead back in the bottom half of the frame when Evan Deegan singled and drove home Lars Olstad.

As Eastman continued to shut down the Braves, the Tigers took the lead for good on an RBI single by Olstad in the sixth.  Olstad later scored on Deegan's third hit of the day.

The Tigers visit the Sauk Prairie Twins on Sunday, September 4th at 1:00 PM.  The Twins also won on Sunday, defeating the Wiota Indians 7-6 in the first round of the Championship Round Robin, setting the stage for the winner of the Albion vs. Sauk Prairie game to be in control of the HTL Championship for their games on Sunday, September 11th.

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TIGERS TOP GENERALS; RETURNING TO FINAL FOUR!!!  --  The Fort Atkinson Generals eliminated the Albion Tigers from the 2015 playoffs with a convincing 10-1 win in a Sectional Semi-Final, and also bested the Tigers with a 4-3 win at Albion Park in their only meeting earlier this season.  But the Tigers found their revenge on Sunday afternoon, defeating the Generals 8-1 in the Southeast Section championship game and advancing to the HTL Final Four for the first time since 2011. 

Over the next three weekends, Albion will play in the HTL Final Four round-robin tournament for the Home Talent League championship.  The Tigers will host the East Section champion Monona Braves on August 28th at Albion Park, then visit the North Section champion Sauk Prairie Twins on September 4th, and host the West Section champion Wiota Indians on September 11th.  All three games will start at 1:00 PM. 

The Generals' bats were hot in the early innings on Sunday, and it appeared they would go ahead in the first inning.  But Tiger leftfielder Lars Olstad threw out Nick Raether at home on Tim Brokl's single to kill the threat.  Fort Atkinson did take the lead in the second inning, when Josh Crandall's sacrifice fly scored Bryan Wallace.

With a 1-0 lead, Generals starter Dan Dean was in control in the early innings on Sunday.  He allowed just one hit in the first five innings, a flare single by Olstad in the fifth.  But the Tigers evened the score when Josh Eastman's 2-out RBI single in the sixth inning scored Aaron Laskowski. 

The game ultimately changed in the seventh inning, when Sam Martin and Olstad both scored on Laskowski's 2-out 2-RBI double.  His drive went past the out-stretched glove of General's leftfielder Nate Pfeifer and gave the Tigers a lead they would not relinquish.

Albion added plenty of insurance with a 5-run ninth inning.  Olstad scored on Kris Agnew's single, and Agnew and Laskowski both scored on Tyler Oren's double to deep rightfield.  For good measure, Eastman doubled off the leftfield fence to score Oren, and Adam Gregory's RBI single sent home Eastman.

Eastman was as effective on the mound as he was at the plate, earning the win while giving up one run in six innings of work.  Lucas Gregory tossed the final three innings, allowing just one base hit.

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EASTMAN, LASKOWSKI LEAD TIGERS TO PLAYOFF WIN; ONE GAME FROM FINAL FOUR!!! -- The Albion Tigers moved within one game of the HTL Final Four on Sunday by shutting out the Clinton Orioles in a Southeast Section semi-final playoff game.  The #1 seed from the West Division, the Tigers faced off against the #2 seed from the East Division at Albion Park and came away with a 4-0 victory.

The win places the Tigers in the Southeast Section championship game against the #1 seed from the East Division Fort Atkinson Generals.  The Generals bested the West Division #2 seed Stoughton Merchants by a score of 6-2 on Sunday afternoon to advance to the championship game.  The Tigers and Generals faced each other just once earlier this summer, with the Generals leaving Albion Park with a victory on June 12th.  It appeared that day that the Tigers would defend their homefield after loading the bases with no outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, but weren't able to score and the Generals held on for a 4-3 win.

Albion is seeking their first trip back to the Final Four since 2011.

Tiger starter Josh Eastman blanked a formidable Orioles lineup in the semi-final win, tossing seven shutout innings and scattering six hits.  He fanned seven and walked just one before giving way to Lucas Gregory, who threw two more scoreless frames to complete the shutout.  Albion's defense also helped out Eastman and Gregory, as middle infielders Tyler Oren and Adam Gregory turned impressive double-plays to kill Clinton threats in both the fifth and eighth innings.

Leadoff hitter Aaron Laskowski provided instant offense Sunday afternoon by leading off the bottom of the first inning with a ground-rule-triple that passed through the oak tree in leftfield and on to Academy Drive.  He later scored on a wild pitch to give Albion a 1-0 lead.

Laskowski gave his Tigers a 3-0 lead in the fifth when his 2-out, 2-RBI single to leftfield scored Adam Gregory and Lars Olstad.  Gregory was hit by a pitch and advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Evan Deegan.  Olstad drew a walk, and he and Gregory each moved up a base on Cameren Wileman's groundout, allowing Laskowski to knock them home with his base hit.

Albion got one more insurance run in the sixth inning when Deegan's 2-out single scored Kyle Johnson, whose headfirst slide at home just beat the tag from Clinton catcher Keegan Mickey.

Clinton starter Joe Lange threw a complete game in a losing effort for the Orioles, striking out nine Tigers and walking only two.

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TIGERS BEAT DEERFIELD 5-3 TO FINISH 13-3! -- The Albion Tigers put the finishing touches on a division-winning season on Saturday with a 5-3 comeback win against Deerfield.  Albion will host a Southeast Section semi-final on August 14 against an opponent not yet determined.  This is Albion's first division title since 2012, and eleventh postseason berth in the last fifteen seasons.

Saturday started out as a pitcher's duel, as Deerfield's Trey Shaw and Albion's Cameren Wileman matched zeros through the first four innings until Deerfield scored two unearned runs in the fifth.  Albion tied it in the seventh when Sam Martin (3x3 on the day) led off with a single and scored on a deep double to left by Bubba Phelps (2x4), who later scored on a balk.  After Deerfield scored in the 8th, Albion rallied in the bottom half to reclaim the lead for good.  Jake Zeimet reached on an error, and was followed by consecutive bunt singles by Evan Deegan and Brennan Deegan (3x3).  Zeimet scored on a throwing error, Evan Deegan scored on another balk, and Jake Taylor hit a fly ball to left that scored Brennan Deegan for the final margin.

Wileman did yeoman's work on the mound, throwing 7.2 innings and allowing only one earned run while striking out eight.  Zeimet relieved him in the 8th and earned the win with a perfect 1.1 innings of relief. 

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 SCHULTE'S SHUTOUT PUSHES TIGERS INTO NIGHT LEAGUE PLAYOFFS! -- The Albion Tigers solidified a #2 seed in the HTL Night League Tournament by shutting out the Cambridge Blues on Thursday night at Albion Park.  Southpaw Bryant Schulte scattered three singles by the Blues and didn't walk anyone in his second complete game shutout of the season in Night League play.  The win gives Albion a 6-2 regular season record in Night League, and they will host Poynette in a first-round game at Racetrack Park in Edgerton at 7:30 PM on Thursday, August 11th.

Amazingly, the Tigers triumphed with only one base hit on the night.  Albion catcher Lars Olstad reached on an error in the first inning and later scored on a wild pitch to give the Tigers an early 1-0 lead.  Olstad scored again in the third inning after he walked, stole second base, advanced on another wild pitch, and scored on Tyler Oren's RBI groundout.

Brett Witkowski was the hard-luck losing pitcher for the Blues, as he tossed a complete game one-hitter but walked six Tigers.  That one hit didn't come until the sixth inning, when Jake Zeimet singled to right and advanced Tim Houfe to third after he had walked.  Tiger centerfielder Cameren Wileman drove home Houfe for more than enough insurance for Schulte.

Schulte was quick and efficient in his work, needing only 67 pitches to close out his seven innings of work.  He threw only four pitches in the seventh, and battery-mate Olstad threw out a would-be Cambridge basestealer to end the game.

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TIGERS BEAT JOHNSON CREEK 8-7  --  The Albion Tigers traveled to Johnson Creek for an exhibition game on Wednesday night and hit their way to a 8-7 victory over the Pioneers.  Albion banged out a total of 13 hits, with 9 men hitting safely and 6 different Tigers driving in runs. 

After a slow start, the Albion bats came alive in the third.  Ryan Phelps walked to load the bases with nobody out, and Lars Olstad's double to deep right scored Jake Taylor and Cameren Wileman to make the score 2-1.  RBI hits from Jim Eastman, Kris Agnew, and Austin Mades followed to give the visitors a 5-1 lead. 

After the Pioneers evened the score in the fifth, Albion re-took the lead in the sixth when Jake Zeimet was hit by a pitch, moved to second on a wild pitch, and scored on Cole Demrow's line drive single to right field.  After a Taylor double, Wileman flew to deep right to score Demrow.  Olstad then added a key insurance run in the seventh when he led off with a double and scored on a single from Tyler Oren.

Zeimet, Agnew, and Taylor shared mound duties, with Agnew earning the win in relief and Taylor striking out four in a two-inning save. 

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OFFENSE GIVES WILEMAN MORE THAN ENOUGH SUPPORT IN 13-2 VICTORY! -- The Tigers offense got rolling in the second inning with a double to deep left-center by Kyle Johnson and a bunt single by Lucas Gregory.  Jesse Appel knocked home Johnson, and a throwing error on Evan Deegan's bunt single allowed Gregory to score.  Aaron Laskowski followed with an RBI single to plate Appel, and Josh Eastman's RBI sent home Deegan.  Consecutive RBI singles by Adam Gregory and Tyler Oren scored two more runs, and another run followed on a Jays error to give the Tigers a 7-0 lead.

Albion extended their lead to 10-0 in the fourth on Eastman's 2-RBI single and an RBI single by Johnson. 

The Jays finally got to Wileman in the fifth when Matt Drefahl's sac fly scored Mike Maves.  But consecutive singles by Ryan Phelps and Austin Mades, followed by Sam Martin's RBI single, gave the Tigers an 11-1 lead in the bottom half of the frame.  Albion struck again in the sixth when Adam Gregory drove home Lars Olstad, then scored on Tyler Oren's double to left.

Albion clinched the West Division of the Southeast Section on July 24th with their win at Utica, and will host a first-round playoff game on Sunday, August 14th at 1:00 PM. 

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TIGER LEFTIES SHUTOUT GROVE; ALBION CLINCHES NIGHT LEAGUE PLAYOFFS -- Crafty left-hander Bryant Schulte tossed 8+ scoreless innings and his hard-throwing buddy Cameren Wileman finished the job as the Albion Tigers won a 2-0 thriller at Cottage Grove on Thursday night to clinch a Night League playoff spot. The Tigers are now 5-2 in Night League play, and will open that tournament on August 11 at Racetrack Park against an opponent yet to be determined.

The pitchers' duel finally cracked in the ninth inning, when Aaron Laskowski singled and stole second to start the inning.  Austin Mades was intentionally walked, and Jesse Appel promptly singled down the right-field line to score Laskowski.  An error was committed when the ball was thrown back to the infield, allowing Mades to score as well.

After shutting down the Firemen all night, Schulte finally ran out of gas after allowing the leadoff hitter to reach in the ninth.  Wileman trotted in from centerfield and earned the save, striking out the last two hitters. 

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ROOKIE ARMS & VETERAN STICKS GIVE TIGERS DIVISION TITLE!!! -- Albion relied on two young arms and several experienced bats to blow by rival Utica on Sunday afternoon by a final score of 10-3.  Rookie right-handers Jake Zeimet and Jake Taylor kept a strong Utica offense in check all afternoon, yielding only two earned runs to The Association and improving the Tigers to a record of 11-3 on the season. 

The Albion win, coupled with Sunday afternoon's McFarland loss to Stoughton, gives the Tigers the outright West Division championship of the Southeast Section with two regular season games remaining.  After hosting Evansville and Deerfield the next two weekends to complete the regular season, the Tigers will host a first-round Southeast Section playoff game at 1:00 PM on Sunday, August 14th at Albion Park.

Stoughton (8-6), McFarland (8-6), and Utica (7-7) will battle over the next two weekends for a likely second playoff spot from the West Division.

The visitors wasted no time getting on the scoreboard on a steamy afternoon at Utica Park.  Adam Gregory drove home Kris Agnew in the first inning following Agnew's double to right-center, and Tyler Oren's RBI-double scored Josh Eastman.  Albion capped a three-run first inning when Kyle Johnson ripped a single and Oren scored just ahead of a tag at homeplate on the throw from Utica leftfielder Max Gartzke.

After a Utica run in the third, Albion scored four more in the fourth, highlighted by Aaron Laskowski's 2-RBI single that scored Lucas Gregory and Evan Deegan.  Agnew followed at the plate and singled to drove home Cameren Wileman, and the Tigers took a 7-1 lead when Eastman's sacrifice fly easily scored Laskowski.

Oren picked up another RBI in the sixth inning, and after the bottom half of the frame Zeimet handed it over to fellow rookie Taylor to finish off Utica and seal the division championship.  Taylor followed Zeimet's six solid innings with three no-hit innings of his own, fanning two and earning a three-inning save.

Laskowski, Agnew, Eastman, Oren, and Johnson combined to go 13x21 at the plate with nine RBIs.  Oren ripped three doubles on the day and raised his batting average to .449 on the season.

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FREE BASEBALL AT TOBACCO DAYS; AGNEW GIVES TIGERS WALK-OFF WIN!!!  --  In a high-stakes, extra-innings game for first place in the West Division of the Southeast Section, the lead went back and forth all day between the Albion Tigers and the McFarland Muskies.  In the end, Kris Agnew capped off a four-run tenth inning for the Tigers with an RBI single that brought a huge Racetrack Park crowd to their feet to celebrate an Albion victory in the inaugural Wally Olstad Classic during Edgerton Tobacco Heritage Days.

Agnew's fourth RBI of the day plated Lucas Gregory with two outs in the tenth to gave the Tigers (10-3) a two-game lead over the Muskies (8-5) with three regular season games remaining.  Agnew got his opportunity after the Muskies intentionally walked Aaron Laskowski, just as they had done in the bottom of the ninth.  In the ninth, Agnew lined a ball up the middle which would have likely scored Evan Deegan from second base to end the game in regulation.  But Muskie pitcher Cory Schuchardt snagged the Agnew liner and doubled Laskowski off first base to push the game to extra innings.

But after the Muskies scored three runs in the top of the tenth, Schuchardt and Justin Hanson combined to walk five Tigers hitters to start the bottom half.  Bases loaded walks to Kyle Johnson and Gregory scored the first two runs, and Albion tied the game when Tyler Oren scored on Deegan's groundball to third.  McFarland catcher Nick Knoche couldn't handle the throw on the force-play at the plate, and Oren slid in safely to tie the game 11-11 with bases still loaded and no outs.

A Muskie double-play nearly extended the game to the eleventh inning.  Now in centerfield, Schuchardt chased down a drive by Jesse Appel and threw a perfect strike to Knoche to tag out Kyle Johnson, who was attempting to tag up from third base and score the winning run.  But Gregory and Deegan also advanced on the play, allowing Gregory to trot home easily one pitch later on Agnew's winning hit.

Starting pitcher Josh Eastman battled a potent Muskie lineup for six innings before giving way to veteran Mike Nanstad, who tossed four innings of relief to earn his first victory of the season.

McFarland scored two in the first inning, but Albion answered in the second when Agnew drove home Deegan and Sam Martin with his first two RBIs of the day.  The Muskies scored three more in the fourth, but Albion got one back in the bottom half when Agnew's single plated Deegan again.  After another McFarland run in the sixth, Albion tied the game at 6-6 with three runs in the bottom half of the frame on RBIs by Oren, Johnson, and Gregory.  Adam Gregory and Oren each scored in the eighth to give the Tigers an 8-6 lead, before the Muskies countered with their two runs in the top of the ninth to tie the game.

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TIGERS BEAT UP GRAYS, WIN 13-0  -  The Albion Tigers made their trip to Lake Mills a quick one on Friday night, exploding for four runs in each of the first two innings on their way to a 13-0 mercy-rule-shortened Southeast matchup.  

Adam Gregory's two-run triple highlighted the Tiger first inning, and he scored on the first of Kyle Johnson's three hits on the night.  RBIs in the second from Johnson, Lucas Gregory, and Lars Olstad pushed the lead to 8-0 Albion after 2.  Two unearned runs in the third and Aaron Laskowski's sac fly in the fourth made it 11-0, and yet another rally in the sixth inning yielded two more runs.  Sam Martin walked, Jake Zeimet and Jim Eastman singled, then Austin Mades doubled off the left-field fence to provide the final runs.  

In all, ten Tigers hit safely in the game and banged out a total of 15 hits.  Brennan Deegan went 2x3 to join Johnson (3x4), Laskowski (2x3), and Adam Gregory (2x3) with multiple hits.

On the mound, Lucas Gregory and Bryant Schulte combined to allow only four baserunners while striking out ten Grays.  Gregory earned the win by throwing the first five innings, and pushed his team to a 9-2 record, still good fo first place in the West Division of the Southeast Section.

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GREGORY CAGES ORIOLES -- Lucas Gregory threw eight dominant innings on Sunday, allowing the Clinton Orioles only two hits and zero runs in a critical Southeast Section crossover matchup.  Gregory also struck out seven and walked just three.  Reliever Mike Nanstad struck out two and walked none while throwing a scoreless ninth to push Albion to 8-2 in Southeast play.

The Tigers gave their pitchers all they needed in the fourth, using both speed and muscle.  Tyler Oren (2x4 on the day and .471 on the season) reached on an infield single, and Kyle Johnson followed with a single to center.  Gregory then reached on a perfect bunt single, and Oren scored when the ball was thrown away by the Clinton pitcher. Two pitches later, Johnson broke for home and scored when Evan Deegan's RBI suicide squeeze bunt made it 2-0 Albion.  Right-fielder Lars Olstad then provided the muscle when he tripled to deep right, scoring Gregory and Deegan to make it a four-run lead.

Aaron Laskowski got his second hit of the day and came all the way around to give the Tigers another insurance run in the seventh inning.  At 8-2 in the West Division of the Southeast Section, Albion now sits 1.5 games ahead of second-place Utica, who was rained out of their game at Waterloo.

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SCHULTE BRILLIANT IN 2-HIT SHUTOUT OF GENERALS -- Albion starter Bryant Schulte frustrated Fort Atkinson batters all night, inducing groundball after groundball as he led his Tigers to a 4-0 victory in HTL Eastern Section Night League in Albion on Thursday.  The lefty took a no-hitter into the 6th inning, when Clayton Ehrke ruined the bid with a clean single.  The only other hit was a harmless two-out double in the 7th, right before Schulte got yet another goundball to shortstop Brennan Deegan to seal the win.  The victory improves the Tigers to 3-2 in Night League play.

Schulte's 7-inning complete game shutout of the Generals featured 17 of the 21 outs via the groundout, with a perfect Albion defense behind him doing their part.  Around the infield Ryan Phelps, Deegan, Jake Zeimet, and Jake Taylor made play ofter play in support of their pitcher, while both Schulte and battery-mate Austin Mades each recorded an out on tough plays as well.

The Tiger bats gave Schulte a lead to work with, starting in the 2nd inning.  Consecutive singles by Sam Martin and Deegan set the stage for Cole Demrow's RBI single to plate Martin and give the Tigers an early 1-0 lead.  

Schulte walked to lead off the 3rd, advanced on Mades' single, and scored on Zeimet's 2-out RBI single to increase the Tigers' advantage.

The Tigers grabbed two more insurance runs in the 6th when Kyle Johnson's pinch-hit single scored Tyler Oren, who also had came off the bench and singled.  Johnson scored when Cameren Wileman shot a basehit into centerfield to give Schulte more than enough insurance.

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TIGERS OUTLAST BLUE DEVILS, WIN 6-4 IN 12 INNINGS -- The Albion Tigers played a little longer than normal on Sunday in Jefferson, but in the end walked away with a victory against the host Blue Devils on Father's Day afternoon.  A late Jefferson rally tied the game in the ninth inning to force extra frames, but the Tigers came out on top with a 6-4 win in 12 innings.  The win improves Albion to 7-2 in the West Division of the Southeast Section, one full game ahead of both McFarland and Utica.

Starter Lucas Gregory had another brilliant outing for the Tigers, tossing seven innings and yielding just one unearned run.  The left-hander, in his second season with Albion, struckout seven and walked just two.

Albion got on the board early when Adam Gregory's bat supported his brother's work on the mound when he crushed a 2-RBI double to right-centerfield to score Kris Agnew and Tyler Oren.  Adam Gregory finished 3x5 on the day.

After the unearned Jefferson run in the fifth inning, Albion pushed the lead to 4-1 with RBI singles in the sixth inning by Lucas Gregory and Evan Deegan.  But Albion made all three outs in the sixth inning on the bases, and those missed opportunities nearly came back to burn the Tigers.

Jefferson rallied for one run in the eighth and two more in the ninth off reliever Jake Zeimet to tie the game at four apiece and send it to extra innings.  And Jefferson appeared to have won the game in the bottom of the 11th inning, when it looked as if Bowe Bushey had singled to seal a walkoff victory with Christian Ott trotting home from third base.  But Albion centerfielder Aaron Laskowski's 2-out diving catch robbed Bushey of a game-winner and gave the Tigers another chance.

After a leadoff single by DH Austin Mades started the 12th for Albion, the speedy Cameren Wileman came on to run for him.  A sacrifice bunt by Lars Olstad moved Wileman into scoring position, and the Blue Devils elected to walk reigning Section MVP Laskowski to pitch to Agnew.  But the veteran firstbaseman made them pay by driving the first pitch over the head of Jefferson centerfielder Michael Huckabay to score Wileman with the go-ahead run.  Oren then drove home Laskowski on a sacrifice fly for an insurance run.

Zeimet retired the Blue Devils in order in the bottom of the 12th to earn his second win in his rookie campaign.

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TIGERS MAKE QUICK WORK OF GRAYS IN NIGHT LEAGUE WIN -- In a contest that lasted only 75 minutes on Thursday night, the Albion Tigers topped the visiting Lake Mills Grays 3-2 in Eastern Section HTL Night League action.  The win improves the Tigers to 2-1 in Night League play, and 8-2 overall.

Though the Tigers mustered only three hits against the Grays, solid pitching and defense paved the way to the Albion victory.  Starter Bryant Schulte hurled his second consecutive impressive outing, earning the win while allowing just one run on three hits in five innings of work.  The left-hander struck out three and walked just one.  Last week, Schulte gave up just one run in eight innings to Waterloo.

Mike Nanstad earned his second save in as many appearances, striking out five in two innings of work.  Nanstad fanned Grays' left-fielder Matt Gullixson with the bases loaded to end the game.

Albion grabbed an early lead, when rookie first-baseman Jake Zeimet roped a 2-out RBI single in the first inning to score Lars Olstad.  Tiger centerfielder Cameren Wileman provided instant offense in the second when he bunted for a hit, stole second, stole third, and scored when Grays' catcher Jared Eichorst made an errant throw into leftfield.  Also in the second inning, Ryan Phelps scored what turned out to be the winning run when Schulte reached on a 2-out throwing error.

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GREGORY NO-HITS CAMBRIDGE TO PUSH ALBION INTO FIRST -- Lucas Gregory fired a no-hitter against the Cambridge Blues on Sunday, striking out ten and walking only two in a game that lasted just seven innings due to the 10-run mercy rule.  Gregory's performance not only gave his Tigers their sixth consecutive win since a one-run Opening Day loss at McFarland, it vaults Albion into sole possession of first place in the West Division of the Southeast Section, improving the Tigers to 6-1 on the season.

Sunday marked Gregory's second no-hitter in just his fifth start as a Tiger.  The other was also an abbreviated game, when Gregory no-hit Deerfield in a 16-0 victory on August 8, 2015.

Albion's bats gave Gregory more than enough support for the win, but his no-hitter was kept intact by a couple favors from his outfield teammates.  Tiger centerfielder Aaron Laskowski's diving catch robbed a hit from Cambridge's Kodi Porter to end the fifth inning.  An inning later, Laskowski's theatrics were outdone by rightfielder Cameren Wileman, when his full-extension diving catch stole a hit from Dennis Aleckson to end the sixth.

The Tigers offense wasted no time getting started on a windy day at Utica Park.  Josh Eastman's RBI single in the first inning scored Laskowski, and Kyle Johnson knocked in two more with his 2-out single to leftfield. 

Gregory helped his own cause in the fifth inning when his RBI double scored Tyler Oren, and then Laskowski's infield single plated Johnson.  But first baseman Kris Agnew blew the game wide open when his double to deep rightfield cleared the bases, scoring Gregory, Jake Zeimet, and Laskowski to give Albion a 9-0 advantage.  An RBI double by Eastman and an RBI-single by Adam Gregory followed, giving Albion the necessary margin to end the game early.

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LATE RALLY SEALS ROAD VICTORY FOR TIGERS -- The Albion Tigers mounted a late comeback on Thursday night at Firemens Park in Waterloo to overcome the host McKays and improve to 1-1 in the HTL Night League's East Division.  Lucas Gregory tossed two scoreless innings in relief to earn the win, and also went 2x3 at the plate and tied the game with his 2-out, 2-RBI single in the fifth inning.

Jim Eastman scored the winning run for the Tigers when Kris Agnew drew a bases-loaded walk in the sixth inning, putting the Tigers ahead for good at 5-4. 

Albion scored their first run in the second inning, when shortstop Brennan Deegan ripped a double to deep right-centerfield to score Gregory.  Kyle Johnson's RBI single in the third tied the game, but Waterloo scored two more in the bottom half of the frame to grab the lead.  But Gregory's 2-RBI clutch hit in the fifth tied the game again, and Eastman touching home in the sixth turned out to be the winning run for the Tigers.

Starter Cameren Wileman threw four solid innings before giving way to Gregory, and former Section MVP Mike Nanstad made his season debut, earning a save while fanning two McKays and tossing a perfect seventh inning.

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BIG BATS AND SCHULTE KEEP TIGERS IN FIRST PLACE!  --  The Albion Tigers bats stayed red hot on Memorial Day at Albion Park, knocking out eleven hits and improving to 5-1 on the season.  Highlighted by Josh Eastman's 2nd-inning towering 2-run in-the-park home-run into the top of the oak tree in left field and Tyler Oren's 6th-inning 2-RBI ground-rule triple onto Academy Drive, the Tigers' offense provided all that was needed to keep Albion in a tie atop the West Division in the Southeast Section.

Southpaw Bryant Schulte took the mound in relief in a tough situation in the second inning, but after battling out of the second, he carried his team the rest of the way, throwing eight innings and giving up only one more run and picking up his first win of the season.

The Tigers scored one in the first, but then erupted for five in the second.  A Waterloo error, Aaron Laskowski's RBI double, and then Eastman's blast gave the Tigers a 6-5 lead after the second inning.  A bases-loaded walk to Brennan Deegan scored Oren in the fifth.  Two more scored on Oren's triple in the sixth, and he eventually scored on Evan Deegan's sacrifice fly.  Oren is hitting .526 on the season for the Tigers.

After giving up one run in the fourth, Schulte stymied the McKays and they wouldn't score again.  He yielded only four hits over eight innings, striking out three.

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16-HIT EFFORT LEADS TIGERS OVER MERCHANTS -- The Albion Tigers used a balanced offensive attack on Sunday afternoon to earn a key victory against West Division opponent Stoughton.  The Albion offense stroked 16 base hits at Norse Park in the 8-6 win, including a combined 13x20 effort from the first five hitters in the lineup; Aaron Laskowski (3x4), Kris Agnew (3x4), Josh Eastman (2x4), Adam Gregory (3x5), and Tyler Oren (2x3).  The win improves the Tigers to 4-1 to keep pace in the division with the McFarland Muskies, and the Merchants fall to 2-2 on the season.

Gregory picked up the first of his four RBIs in the first inning when his two-out RBI single scored Laskowski.  Following an Agnew walk and an Eastman double, Gregory singled again in the third inning to drive them both home and give the Tigers a 3-0 advantage.  Agnew's 2-RBI double in the fourth plated Lars Olstad and Laskowski, and Jake Zeimet's sacrifice fly in the 5th scored Oren to put Albion up 6-1.

RBIs by Gregory and Oren in the 8th inning turned out to be more than just insurance runs, as the Merchants mounted a comeback in the bottom half of the frame, scoring four times.  But with the winning run at first base in the 9th, Josh Eastman got T.J. DiPrizio to bounce into a fielder's choice to end the game.  Eastman earned his first save of the season.

Zeimet earned his first HTL win, tossing 3 2/3 innings in relief of Agnew. 

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ALBION OFFENSE OVERWHELMS UTICA; TIGERS WIN 13-9 -- The Albion Tigers scored early and often to outpunch an explosive Utica lineup on Sunday afternoon at Albion Park.  The Tigers banged out 15 hits and held off a potent Utica offense to earn a 13-9 victory in a marathon game that lasted nearly three and a half hours.  The win improves Albion to 3-1 on the season. 

Having lost the previous five contests with Utica dating back to to 2014, the Tigers bats were determined to provide a different outcome Sunday.

Utica scored two in the top of the first inning, but Albion answered with four in the bottom half on an RBI double by Kris Agnew (2x5), a sac fly by Kyle Johnson, and RBI singles by Tyler Oren (3x5) and Sam Martin.  The Association quickly knotted the score with two more in the second inning, but Albion answered with another four-run inning in the third, highlighted by Evan Deegan's RBI single and a 2-RBI single by Aaron Laskowski (2x6).

With the score in Albion's favor 8-5 after another Utica run in the fourth, Albion put up yet another four-run inning in their half of the fourth with RBIs from Lucas Gregory (2x4) and Deegan (2x5).  Gregory drove home Oren in the fifth as well, when his ground-rule triple to deep leftfield rolled across Academy Drive.

Along with swinging a big stick, Lucas Gregory also picked up the win for the Tigers on the mound, tossing 4 1/3 innings in relief and giving up two earned runs.  Rookie Jake Zeimet finished the game by blanking Utica in the eighth & ninth innings to secure the win for Albion.

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AGNEW'S ARM, TIMELY HITS LEAD ALBION OVER DEERFIELD -- Kris Agnew held the host Deerfield Demons hitless through 6 2/3 innings on Sunday afternoon, ultimately yielding only one hit and one run to pick up his second victory of the season.  The veteran southpaw threw seven innings and struck out five in leading his Tigers to a 7-1 victory at Fireman's Park in Deerfield.  Josh Eastman fanned three in two scoreless innings of relief work on the mound.  The win improves the Tigers to 2-1 in the 2016 campaign.

After scoring two unearned runs on a throwing error in the first inning, Adam Gregory knocked home Cole Demrow and Agnew with a 2-out, 2-RBI single in the second inning to stake the Tigers to a 4-0 lead.  Albion scored their final two runs when Demrow lined 2-out RBI singles in both the 5th and 7th innings, en route to a 3-hit day for the Tiger rightfielder.  In both innings he drive home Tiger shortstop Tyler Oren, who was 2x3 with a double.

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ALBION KNOCKS AROUND EVANSVILLE, WIN 12-1 -- After a tough 2-1 loss at McFarland in their season opener last weekend, the Albion Tigers were anxious for their first win of the season.  They grabbed that win on Saturday night in convincing fashion at Lake Leota Park in Evansville against the home Jays, winning 12-1 in a game shortened to seven innings by the 10-run mercy rule.  The win evens Albion's record on the young season at 1-1.  Left-hander Kris Agnew struck out the side in the first inning and never looked back, fanning eight hitters in five innings of work.  Agnew yielded only two hits, one walk, and one unearned run in five innings of work.  Bryant Schulte tossed two scoreless innings to close out the contest.

Tyler Oren's 2-out, 2-RBI single started the scoring, and Evan Deegan's RBI single gave the Tigers a 3-0 advantage in the first inning.  An RBI double by Austin Mades and a couple Jays defensive miscues gave the Tigers three more in the 2nd.  The game was put out of reach in the 3rd when Adam Gregory's base-clearing double drove in Brennan Deegan, Aaron Laskowski, and Agnew.

Mades hit his second double of the night to deep leftfield in the 7th, and he scored when leftfielder Sam Martin also doubled.  Martin came home on Evan Deegan's sacrifice fly, giving the Tigers their final tally.

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2015 ALL-STARS LEAD TIGERS TO EXCITING EXHIBITION WIN -- Aaron Laskowski and Kris Agnew represented the Albion Tigers in last year's Home Talent League All-Star Game, and both players picked up 2016 where they left off 2015 in leading the Albion Tigers to a 4-3 win over the Sun Prairie Sun Dawgs in an exhibition game at Ashley Field on Sunday.  Laskowski, the reigning Southeast Section MVP, went 2x4 with a double and scored a run in the 1st inning and Agnew started on the hill and fanned ten in only four innings.

Fellow southpaw Bryant Schulte earned the victory, tossing scoreless frames in the 5th, 6th, and 7th.  Facing bases loaded and no outs in the 7th, Schulte induced a comebacker that he threw to catcher Sutton DeVoll for the first out.  A pop-up to Tigers second baseman Evan Deegan recorded the second out, and Schulte caught Sun Prairie centerfielder Aaron Schmidt looking to end the inning with no damage.

Sun Prairie threatened again in the 8th by loading the bases again with no outs, but Cameren Wileman fanned two Cardinals and got Jessie Lehman to ground out to end the threat yielding only one run.

Holding on to a 4-2 lead, Wileman loaded the bases with a one-out walk, and then hit a batter to push the game to 4-3.  But Cardinals thirdbaseman Mike Brekke lined out to Tiger rookie thirdbaseman Brennan Deegan, and he flipped to Matt Towns at second base to double-up Schmidt and end the game.

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TIGERS GETTING READY FOR SPRING -- The Albion Tigers have finalized their 2016 schedule, looking to continue the success that they have had in recent years. The Tigers finished last year with a 17-10 overall record, including 12-4 in the Southeast Section and qualifying for the postseason for the tenth time in the last fourteen years. 

The Tigers will play April exhibition games in Sun Prairie and Cottage Grove before starting Southeast Section play on May 1 against McFarland. The home season starts Sunday May 22 against rival Utica at Albion Park, followed by a Memorial Day tilt against the Waterloo McKays (Monday May 30).

Other highlights of the schedule include two visits from defending Southeast Section champ Fort Atkinson (June 12 and June 23) and a July 10 showdown in Albion against the perennial contender Stoughton Merchants.

New this year - the First Annual Wally Olstad Classic will be played on Sunday July 17 at Edgerton Racetrack Park as part of Tobacco Heritage Days. The Tigers will face the McFarland Muskies with a 2pm first pitch.

One other date for Tiger fans to take note of is the Albion Par Three Challenge at Creekview Par Three on Sunday August 7.  Details on the golf outing will be coming soon. It's almost spring!!!



   
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