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Hennager men’s fastpitch softball team repeats as Minnesota state champs

Tuesday, August 7th, 2018

The Hennager Plumbing and Heating Men’s Fastpitch Softball Team repeated as Minnesota Class A Men’s  Fastpitch State Softball Champions, going 4-0 in last weekend’s tournament in Blaine, Minn. Team members include, front row, from left: Chris Bambenek, Minneapolis; Tyler Eickhoff, Fountain; Jake Dalton, Lake Crystal; Spencer Yackel, Rochester; Brent Meshke, Lake Crystal; and David Dewitz, Good Thunder. Back from, from left, is: Coach Blake Meshke, Lake Crystal; Brett Scheevel, Rochester; Ryan Scheevel, Rochester; Brandon Friedrichs, Lake Crystal; Derek Meshke, Brookings, S.D.; Josh Schroeder, Lake Crystal; and Robert Petersen, Pipestone. Photo By Sheryl Doering Meshke

Walk-off home run wins repeat title for Lake Crystal ball club

By Sheryl Doering Meshke
Reporter / Photographer
Aug. 5, 2018

BLAINE, Minn. – The Hennager Plumbing and Heating Men’s Fastpitch Softball Team repeated as Minnesota Sports Federation Class A Men’s Fastpitch State Champions, going 4-0 this weekend at Aquatore Park in Blaine, Minn.

As defending champs, the Hennager team — “Plumbers” — received a first-round bye. In the opening game, the hometown team defeated the Bombers of Fargo, N.D., 6-2. Brent Meshke of Lake Crystal, Minn., took the win, with five strikeouts. Collecting base hits were Jake Dalton, Lake Crystal, and Robert Petersen, Pipestone, Minn. Brent Meshke added a solo homer.

Brent Meshke helped Hennager Plumbing and Heating of Lake Crystal win the 2018 Minnesota Men’s Class A State Fastpitch Championship, Aug. 5 in Blaine, Minn. Photo By Sheryl Doering Meshke

Facing the St. Paul Pawns of St. Paul, Minn., the Hennager men won in a slugfest, 15-9. Brent Meshke and Ryan Scheevel, Rochester, Minn., shared duties on the mound. Collecting multiple hits for the Plumbers were Dalton; Brent Meshke; Petersen; Brandon Friedrichs, Lake Crystal; and Josh Schroeder, Lake Crystal. Petersen and Schroeder delivered home runs.

Following a sixth-inning home run to tie the championship game, Josh Schroeder receives accolades from team members Jake Dalton, center, and Brent Meshke. Photo By Sheryl Doering Meshke

To reach the championship game, the Plumbers defeated Minnesota Computers, St. Paul, 3-1, with Scheevel taking the win. He gave up six hits and struck out one. Dalton and Scheevel went two for four at the plate, with Scheevel securing a solo home run.

In the championship game, the Plumbers defeated Striker’s Lanes of Baldwin, Wis., 6-4. Brent Meshke started in the circle. In the top of the first inning, the Strikers scored three runs. The Plumbers answered with three runs in the bottom of the first. Strikers scored again in the top of the fifth, to take a one-run lead.

Scheevel relieved Brent Meshke in the sixth inning. In the bottom of the sixth, Schroeder hit a solo home run to tie the game, 4-4. With a final chance for the win in the bottom of the seventh inning, lead-off batter Dalton bunted for a single. Brent Meshke, in the third spot, hit a walk-off home run to win the title. Scheevel picked up the win.

As Brent Meshke rounds third base, coach Blake Meshke gives a high five for the walk-off home run to win the state men’s fastpitch softball championship. Photo By Sheryl Doering Meshke

Ryan Scheevel of Rochester, Minn. fires a pitch during the 2018 Minnesota Class A Men’s State Fastpitch Softball Tournament. Scheevel picked up the win in the championship game in a 6-4 victory over Striker’s Lanes. Photo By Sheryl Doering Meshke

Hennager fastpitch softball team is Minnesota state champions

Tuesday, August 8th, 2017

The Hennager Plumbing and Heating Fastpitch Softball Team of Lake Crystal, Minn., is the 2017 Class B Men’s Fastpitch State Champion. Members include, back row, from left: Coach Blake Meshke, Lake Crystal; Derek Meshke, Volga, S.D.; Jace Holm, Fargo, N.D.; Dan Pawelk, Northfield, Minn.; Josh Schroeder, Lake Crystal; and Robert Petersen, Pipestone, Minn. Front row, from left, is: Chris Bambeneck, Minneapolis; Brent Meshke, Lake Crystal; Spencer Yackel, Rochester, Minn.; Jake Dalton, Lake Crystal; Blaid Friedrichs, Lake Crystal; and Brandon Friedrichs, Lake Crystal. Photo By Sheryl Doering Meshke

LAKE CRYSTAL, Minn. – The Hennager Plumbing and Heating Fastpitch Softball Team of Lake Crystal, Minn., is the 2017 Class B Men’s Fastpitch State Champion. The team posted a 4-0 record this weekend at Sand Creek Fields, Coon Rapids, Minn.

The “Plumbers” won the opening round, 8-7, defeating Striker’s Lanes of Baldwin, Wis. Jace Holm, Fargo, N.D., secured the win, relieving Brent Meshke, Lake Crystal, in the third inning. Holm struck out nine batters and, at the plate, hit a three-run homerun. Meshke was 2-3 at the plate.

Next up was the Odin, Minn., fastpitch team. In a heated battle with a longtime rival, the Plumbers won 4-3. Holm started the game and pitched until the third inning. With the game tied 3-3, Meshke was called to the circle and earned the win.

Collecting two hits each were Jake Dalton, Lake Crystal; Holm; and Josh Schroeder, Lake Crystal. Brandon Friedrichs, Lake Crystal, hit a solo home run in the sixth inning. Defensive plays by Schroeder and Blaid Friedrichs, Lake Crystal, in the bottom of the seventh inning, were key to the victory.

In game three of the championship run, the Plumbers defeated Minnesota Computers of West St. Paul, 1-0. Meshke got the win on the mound, striking out five and giving up two hits. Dalton collected two hits in the contest.

In the championship game, the Plumbers defeated Minnesota Computers, 3-2, who worked their way through the losers’ bracket. Meshke took the win with two strikeouts, giving up five hits. Schroeder was 2-3 at the plate; and Holm had a two-run homerun.

This is the second time in three years that the Plumbers have earned the state title. The team will now travel to Fargo for the North American Fastpitch Assoc. (NAFA) AA World Series, Aug. 18-20. In the opening game, the team will face ECL Bronx of New York.

Minnesota’s Hennager Plumbing and Heating vying for a NAFA World Series Championship

Sunday, August 14th, 2016

NAFA.A.MajorRoster1lr Twenty teams started the NAFA World Series A-Major Division, but only four remain, with undefeated Hennager Plumbing and Heating of Lake Crystal, Minnesota in contention for the championship.

NORTH MANKATO, Minn. – The mantra for Hennager Plumbing and Heating of Lake Crystal, Minn. probably goes something like this: “One more boys, one more and the championship is ours!”

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Check out Playnafa for 2016 NAFA World Series stats

Saturday, August 13th, 2016

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NORTH MANKATO, Minn.Playnafa.org is providing the stats for the 2016 NAFA World Series being held at Caswell Park in North Mankato, Aug. 11-20.

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Hennager’s Plumbing & Heating of Lake Crystal reaches NAFA A-Major Winner’s Bracket Final

Friday, August 12th, 2016

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NORTH MANKATO, Minn. – The small town of Lake Crystal is about 15 miles southwest of the cities of Mankato / North Mankato. Lake Crystal may be small in numbers (pop. 2,500), but it is big in men’s fastpitch softball – especially the Hennager Plumbing and Heating team.

In 2015 Hennager won the Minnesota Sports Federation Class B State Championship, and is a threat to take the 2016 NAFA World Series A-Major Division title after winning three consecutive games in the 20 team tournament being held at Caswell Park in North Mankato, Aug. 11-14.

Hennager opened with a 7-0 victory over Sawdust City (WI), then defeated RM Kurtz 6-2, and Weezer’s Fastpitch 8-1 to reach the winners bracket final scheduled for 6 p.m. Saturday.

Click here for the A-Major bracket.

Explosive Fargo Bombers Take Hollywood Sports Complex Men’s Fastpitch Tournament

Sunday, July 10th, 2016

BombersMVPsMeshke.3lr Jace Holm, left, was selected the Most Valuable Player and Brent Meshke was named to the All-Tournament team for helping the Fargo Bombers win the Hollywood Sports Complex Men’s Fastpitch Tournament, June 9-10. Photo 2015 NAFA World Series / By Sheryl Meshke, Lake Crystal, Minn.

Courtesy of Mike Groch / Rice Lake Orangemen

WATERTOWN, Minn. – The Fargo Bombers went 6-0 to claim the Hollywood Sports Complex Men’s Fastpitch Tournament. The Bombers defeated Minnesota Computers, Rice Lake Orangemen and Lens Auto in pool play Saturday. Then on Sunday in the single elimination playoffs, Fargo beat Dawson, Rice Lake and Odin to claim the championship.

    THE MVP
  • Most Valuable Player, Jace Holm, Fargo Bombers
    • ALL-TOURNEY
  • Brian Waldvogel, Minnesota Computers
  • Joe Ganther, Len’s Auto
  • Nick Leach, Len’s Auto
  • John Hohenstein, Odin, Minn.
  • Brent Meshke, Odin, Minn.
  • Dan Gallagher, PBI
  • Jerry Ball, PBI
  • Mike Groch, Rice Lake, Wisc.
  • Bryce Ducharme, Rice Lake, Wisc.
  • Brent Rohlik, RFG
  • Chad Feikema, RFG
  • Justin Jager, Dawson
  • Great weekend and hats off to the staff at the Hollywood Sports Complex for putting on a great tournament atmosphere and dealing with the puddles of water on the fields Sunday. Saturday was perfect but the fields got poured on saturday night and sunday morning.

    Mike Groch
    White Glove Cleaning
    651-768-0020
    www.wgcleaning.com

    Lake Crystal Hennager Plumbing and Heating takes MSF Men’s Class B State Championship

    Tuesday, August 4th, 2015
    Hennager Plumbing and Heating Fastpitch Softball Team of Lake Crystal, Minn. is the 2015 Minnesota Sports Federation Men's Class B State Champions. Photo By SHERYL DOERING MESHKE

    Hennager Plumbing and Heating Fastpitch Softball Team of Lake Crystal, Minn. is the 2015 Minnesota Sports Federation Men’s Class B State Champions. Photo By SHERYL DOERING MESHKE

    Front row, from left: Eric Hood, Lake Crystal; Spencer Yackel, Brooklyn Center; Jake Dalton, Lake Crystal; Brent Meshke, Lake Crystal; Jason Cook, Minneapolis; Brandon Friedrichs, Lake Crystal; Seth Anderson, New Prague; David DeWitz, Good Thunder; and Robert Peterson, Pipestone. Back row, from left: Joe Reinhart, Winsted; Derek Meshke, Brookings, S.D.; Josh Schroeder, Lake Crystal; Rick Saunders, Waconia; Michael Lewis, Amboy; assistant coach Jeff Hohenstein, Garden City; coach Blake Meshke, Lake Crystal; and sponsor Steve Hennager.

    By SHERYL DOERING MESHKE

    NORTH MANKATO, Minn. – The Hennager Plumbing and Heating Fastpitch Softball Team of Lake Crystal, Minn., is the 2015 Class B Men’s Fastpitch State Champion. The team posted a 4-0 record at Caswell Park, North Mankato, Minn.

    The “Plumbers” won the opening round in five innings, defeating Beaver Creek, Minn., 8-0. Winning pitcher was Brent Meshke, Lake Crystal, striking out six. At the plate, Josh Schroeder, Lake Crystal, was three for three. Jake Dalton, Lake Crystal, and Michael Lewis, Amboy, were two for three. Brent Meshke inked a home run.

    MESHKE AND LEWIS STRONG PITCHING DUO
    In the second game, Hennager defeated Jonny’s of St. Charles, Minn., 4-3. Brent Meshke completed the first three innings in the circle, with three strikeouts. Lewis finished the game, striking out three. Swinging hot bats with two hits each, were Dalton; Lewis; and Brandon Friedrichs, Lake Crystal. Both Lewis and Brent Meshke knocked home runs.

    The Plumbers faced Odin, Minn., the longtime rival, in the semi-final game. At the top of the seventh, the Hennager men were behind 1-4. Leadoff batter Spencer Yackel, Brooklyn Center, drew a walk. Pitcher Lewis then hit a home run to tighten the score, 3-4. The next batter — Brent Meshke — followed with a solo home run to tie the game. After 10 innings, the Plumbers won 7-4.

    Lewis pitched the entire game, striking out 10 batters. Racking up multiple hits in the contest was: Dalton; Schroeder; and Rick Saunders, Waconia.

    Brent Meshke delivers a pitch in the MSF Class B State Championship game for Lake Crystal. Photo By SHERYL DOERING MESHKE

    Brent Meshke delivers a pitch in the MSF Class B State Championship game for Lake Crystal. Photo By SHERYL DOERING MESHKE

    PLUMBERS TAKE STATE CROWN
    The Hennager team then advanced to the championship game, defeating Jordan Realty, Jordan, Minn., 9-0 in six innings. Brent Meshke took the win in the circle, striking out four batters and giving up one hit. Batters chalking up two hits each, included: Dalton, Yackel and Derek Meshke, Brookings, S.D. Brent Meshke added a solo home run.

    This is the first men’s state championship for the Hennager team. After securing a second-place finish in the Class C tournament in 2014, and third in 2013, the team was classified as a Class B team.

    Stats of interest:
    • Brent Meshke pitched 14 innings, striking out 13 and giving up three runs. Michael Lewis pitched 14 innings, striking out 13 and giving up four runs.
    • Jake Dalton was 9 for 13; Spencer Yackel, 4 for 8; Schroeder was 6 for 14; Lewis 6 for 14, with two home runs; and Brent Meshke logged four home runs.

    Perry Coonce, State Commissioner
    perry@msf1.org

    Steve Ketter, Assistant State Commissioner
    steve@msf1.org
    Ph: 952-405-6936

    Hennager fastpitch team of Lake Crystal, Minnesota is state runner-up

    Monday, August 11th, 2014
    The Hennager Plumbing and Heating Fastpitch Softball Team of Lake Crystal, Minn.: front row, from left: Dan Pawlek, Northfield; Brent Meshke, Lake Crystal; Eric Hood, Lake Crystal; Jake Dalton, Lake Crystal; Brandon Friedrichs, Lake Crystal; Devon Hagge, Lake Crystal; Dave DeWitz, Good Thunder; Seth Anderson, Minnesota Lake; back frow, from left: Robert Peterson, Pipestone; Derek Meshke, Lake Crystal; Josh Schroeder, Lake Crystal; Matt Peterson, Lake Crystal; Josh Sonnabend, Willmar; Aaron Lynch, Winsted; assistant coach Jeff Hohenstein, Garden City; and coach Blake Meshke, Lake Crystal. Photo By SHERYL MESHKE

    The Hennager Plumbing and Heating Fastpitch Softball Team of Lake Crystal, Minn.: front row, from left: Dan Pawlek, Northfield; Brent Meshke, Lake Crystal; Eric Hood, Lake Crystal; Jake Dalton, Lake Crystal; Brandon Friedrichs, Lake Crystal; Devon Hagge, Lake Crystal; Dave DeWitz, Good Thunder; Seth Anderson, Minnesota Lake; back frow, from left: Robert Peterson, Pipestone; Derek Meshke, Lake Crystal; Josh Schroeder, Lake Crystal; Matt Peterson, Lake Crystal; Josh Sonnabend, Willmar; Aaron Lynch, Winsted; assistant coach Jeff Hohenstein, Garden City; and coach Blake Meshke, Lake Crystal. Photo By SHERYL MESHKE

    By SHERYL MESHKE / LAKE CRYSTAL

    LAKE CRYSTAL, Minn. – The Hennager Plumbing and Heating Fastpitch Softball Team of Lake Crystal, Minn., is the Minnesota Men’s Class C Fastpitch Tournament Runners-Up. The team secured the second-place finish with six wins and two losses this weekend at Caswell Park, North Mankato, Minn.

    The team lost to Len’s Auto of West St. Paul, Minn., 5-6, in the championship game. Taking the circle for the fifth game of the day, Brent Meshke, Lake Crystal, gave up six hits, walked one and struck out four.

    Click to continue reading “Hennager fastpitch team of Lake Crystal, Minnesota is state runner-up”

    Hennager Fastpitch team wins Okabena tournament

    Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

    Okabena.Meshke.1392web Winning the tournament held in Okabena, Minn. was the Hennager Fastpitch Softball Team of Lake Crystal, Minn. Team members include, front row, from left: Tyler Bouley, Brent Meshke, Eric Hood, Brandon Friedrichs, Jake Dalton and Devon Hagge; back row, from left: coach Blake Meshke, Kevin Roth, Derek Meshke, Josh Schroeder and Jason Cook. Photo By Sheryl Meshke.

    By Sheryl Meshke / Contributing Writer

    LAKE CRYSTAL, Minn. – The Hennager Plumbing and Heating fastpitch softball team won the Second Annual Okabena Fastpitch Softball Tournament, held June 29-30. The Lake Crystal-based team is comprised of 10 players, with an average age of 22.

    In the opening game, the Hennager team faced Premier Bank of Rock Rapids, Iowa, winning 6-1. The team chalked up runs nearly every inning, collecting 15 hits.

    At the plate, Jake Dalton was 2 for 2; Brent Meshke and Tyler Bouley, 3 for 4; and Derek Meshke and Brandon Friedrichs, 2 for 4. Josh Schroeder registered a solo home run. Brent Meshke took the win on the mound, striking out five and walking two.

    The second game was a win through forfeit, with The Lakers from Okabena.

      FORMER USA JUNIOR TEAM PITCHERS GO HEAD-TO-HEAD

    In the winners’ bracket, Hennager faced Grumpy’s of Forest City, Iowa. The game featured a contest between two former U.S. Junior Men’s Fastpitch National Team pitchers — Brent Meshke, 2012 team, and Jimmy Hartman, 2008.

    The Hennager boys, “Plumbers,” scored in the first inning. Devon Hagge reached first base on an error, with Brent Meshke securing a triple to score Hagge.

    Grumpy’s tied the score in the second inning, took a 2-1 lead in the third, and scored twice in the fourth. With the scoreboard showing 1-4, the Hennager team started its comeback.

      SEVENTH INNING CHARGE

    The plumbers collected four hits in the fifth inning, scoring three runs to tie the contest. In the bottom of the seventh inning, Brent Meshke singled, moved to second on a Bouley single and scored on a single by Derek Meshke. Brent Meshke, 20, secured a second win in the circle with four strikeouts.

    Meshke.1330web 20-year-old Brent Meshke hurled Henniger Plumbing to the 2nd Annual Okabena Men’s Fastpitch Tournament. Meshke had seven strikeouts in defeating Grumpy’s in the championship. Photo by Sheryl Meshke

      HITS, HOMERS AND PITCHING

    Undefeated, the Hennager team once again faced the Grumpy’s team that fought its way through the loser’s bracket. Hennager won, 7-4, with 10 hits. Leading at the plate was Friedrichs, 2 for 4; and Eric Hood and Jason Cook, 2 for 3.

    Included in the count was a solo home run from Cook and Bouley. On the mound, Brent Meshke recorded seven strikeouts and four walks.

    “You can tell many of these players have played together for nearly 12 years,” says Coach Blake Meshke. “Hitters were on, but the defense was exceptional. Brandon Friedrichs was outstanding at shortstop and Jake Dalton caught everything hit his way.”

    Eric Hood.1267web Swinging the hot bat in the championship game is Eric Hood, going two for three. Photo By Sheryl Meshke

    This team will represent Lake Crystal in the ASA 23-Under Men’s Fastpitch Nationals in St. Joseph, Mo., Aug. 2-3.

    (A big thank you to Sheryl Meshke for this fine reporting and photography, informing fastpitch fans that the game is still popular and being played in many parts of the U.S.)

    ISC Press Release – Carrol Forbes Foundation – 2013 Bursary Winners

    Saturday, February 22nd, 2014

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    ISC PRESS RELEASE / Joe Todd
    ISC V-P Communications
    FTODE739@rogers.com

    INGERSOLL, ONTARIO – For the second time in the past five years, the ISC’s Carrol Forbes Foundation (CFF) is awarding a pair of scholarships to two very deserving applicants.

    “Brent Meshke and Michael Lewis both have met all of the criteria we look for among applicants for the annual scholarship and we are pleased to make an award to each of them,” said Charlie Smith, ISC Treasurer and Chairman of the CFF Committee. “There were six applicants in 2013 and there were some very tough decisions before Meshke and Lewis prevailed as the successful applicants.”

    Brent Meshke is from Brookings, South Dakota and is enrolled in Agriculture Education Program at South Dakota State University.

    He has been involved with the ISC/ASA Pitcher Development Program from 2007 – 2012 and in 2012 was a member of the USA Junior Men’s National Team that competed in Parana, Argentina.

    In 2013, Brent was part of the Midland Jr. Explorers team that won the ISC U21 Championship in Quad Cities.

    Michael Lewis is a resident of Amboy, Minnesota and is a freshman at Minnesota State University in Mankato, Minnesota and is taking general level courses while he finalizes his career path.

    Michael attended quite a few ISC World Tournaments as a fan with his father, Jon Lewis, who played the men’s game for quite a few years. Michael now plays with the Fargo Kegel Black Knights and was also a member of the U21 champion Midland Jr. Explorers.

    Both of these fine young men personify the next generation of ISC fastpitch softball players.

    The Carrol Forbes Foundation was established in 1995 in memory of ISC founder Carrol Forbes (1909-1982) and has provided funding since 2006 for youth development programs. Its mission is “to invest in the future of this great sport of fastpitch softball.”