South upends Twins on state tourney walkoff winner

After ending the regular season on a hot streak of nine wins in 11 games, the American Legion Twins will have to work their way up from the bottom once again.

The Post 20 Twins lost a heartbreaking 4-3 game to South in walkoff fashion on the opening day of the American Legion State tournament Tuesday at Mulcahy Stadium in Anchorage.

However, it’s nothing new for Post 20. In 2012, the Twins fought back from an opening day upset to Eagle River to claim the team’s third state championship in its history.

Twins coach Robb Quelland is confident the current squad has the tools to repeat the feat.

“It’s a little harder coming up through the loser’s bracket, but the kids are resilient,” Quelland said. “Hitting is contagious, and we’ve shown we can hit before. We’re going to break out sooner or later.”

A two-out single by Parker Johnson with the bases loaded brought in Lian Lincoln to score the winning run and sent the Wolverines on to the next round of the tournament.

The Twins, meanwhile, were relegated to the double-elimination style loser’s bracket, facing a 9 a.m. matchup today against Fairbanks Post 11, which lost to Juneau 5-2 on Tuesday. From here on out, any loss will end the season.

The loss also erased what began as a fine outing from Twins starter Matthew Daugherty, who allowed just one hit over 6 2-3 innings on the mound. Daugherty also walked four batters and struck out three. Tommy Koloski recorded the win for South with a complete game, giving up six hits and striking out 10.

Leading 3-2 and only three outs away from wrapping up the win, the Twins saw things go downhill quickly. Post 20 pitching ace Joey Becher took the mount to wrap up the game, but Sladen Mohl set things into motion with a single. After stealing second, a Twins throwing error to first base allowed Mohl to score to tie the game up at 3-all.

Becher then walked Jonny Homza to load the bases with two outs, setting up Johnson to hit the walkoff single.

“It’s an emotional loss, that’s for sure,” Quelland said, adding that the team managed to release much of the frustration and tension with a post game workout on the field.

“It was very productive after the game, and hopefully we’ll be able to continue it tomorrow.”

The Twins opened the scoring in the top of the second, starting with a leadoff single by Jake Conver, who then scored on a sacrifice fly by J.J. Sonnen.

In the fifth inning, another leadoff single — this time by Calvin Hills — helped the Twins score two more runs. Kenny Griffin reached base on a fielder’s choice hit, and Hills scored on a South throwing error. Then, Tommy Bowe’s single brought Josh Darrow in to score for a 3-0 lead for the local nine.

South clawed back in the seventh frame, beginning with a steal of home plate by Koloski and continuing with a second run on an RBI single by Bryce Schwarz.

Hills and Conver both led the Twins at the plate with 2 for 4 outings, including a run scored by each. Overall, the Twins had six hits to South’s five. Most striking was the five errors that South committed, while the Twins had one.

More in Sports

Kenai girls swimmers take 3rd at Palmer Invite

The Colony girls and Palmer boys swimming and diving teams won the… Continue reading

Soldotna junior Brayden Taylor rushes the ball down the field during the Division II state football championship game against Lathrop at Service High School in Anchorage on Saturday, Oct. 16, 2021. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
Lathrop snaps SoHi’s run of state titles

The Soldotna Stars football team fell to Fairbanks’ Lathrop High School in… Continue reading

Soldotna’s Gehret Medcoff runs for a touchdown against Wasilla on Friday, Sept. 24, 2021, at Justin Maile Field in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Stars dominate major NLC football awards

Soldotna, which went undefeated in the Northern Lights Conference this season, won… Continue reading

SoHi wrestlers take 4th at Houston Altercation

The Soldotna wrestling team finished fourth at the season-opening Houston Altercation Tournament… Continue reading

Kenai Central's Emma Beck attacks against Nikiski's Rylee Ellis on Friday, Oct. 15, 2021, at Kenai Central High School in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Volleyball roundup: Kenai tops Nikiski; Wasilla sweeps SoHi

The senior civics project of Valerie Villegas was a smashing success Friday… Continue reading

Morgan Aldridge leads riders down a hill at the start of Week 3 of the Soldotna Cycle Series on Thursday, July 18, 2019, at Tsalteshi Trails. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Chainwreck Cyclocross Series holds final race of season

The Chainwreck Cyclocross Series wrapped up with the fifth race Thursday at… Continue reading

Nikiski's Rylee Ellis attacks against Soldotna's Ashlee Anderson on Thursday, Oct. 14, 2021, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Volleyball roundup: SoHi, Kenai pull out wins

Staff report Host Soldotna celebrated its senior night with a 3-1 nonconference… Continue reading

Brock Wilson and Brayden Taylor lead Soldotna onto Justin Maile Field for a Division II semifinal against North Pole on Friday, Oct. 8, 2021, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
SoHi football to play for 9th straight state title

Eight straight state titles, and 12 since 2006. An 18-game postseason winning… Continue reading

MJ Hendren pictured kayaking at Hidden Lake next to a large rock exposure. (Photo provided)
Refuge Notebook: Geology of the Kenai … it rocks!

One thing that never ceases to amaze me about living in Alaska… Continue reading

Most Read