Rolbiecki returns in Legion win
Minneota’s Senior American Legion 5-3 season-opening win over Canby was a nice beginning, in several ways.
First, they came back from a 3-0 deficit to rally, got good pitching and timely hitting.
But the best part happened in the top of the seventh when interim Coach J.D. Pesch sent Landon Rolbiecki into right field.
The three-sport Minneota athlete hadn’t play any sports since that day last fall when he broke his leg in a Minneota football game.
Many surgeries, and at least one more to go, and a lot of rehabilitating, have kept Rolbiecki on the shelf.
But in the final inning, with one out, Canby’s Nolan Harding had a fly ball to right field. Rolbiecki caught it easily and his long wait to get back in action was finally over.
“He was itching to play real bad. It was good to get him in there. I think it surprised him,” said Coach Pesch.
Then the coach chuckled, “And he didn’t have to dive.”
So Rolbiecki’s first action back, after a long wait, was short, but successful.
Pesch laughed again, saying, “I looked to see if his mom (Karen) was in the stands. But I’d talked to his dad, so they knew (he may be playing)."
Rolbiecki, who is a pitcher and catcher by trade, has played several positions before he was injured in football. Now, it’s likely he will work his way back slowly.
Pesch was coaching the team because Head Coach Keven Larson, was coaching the younger kids in their recreation game tonight. “We’re going to rotate and work on developing the younger grades,” said Pesch.
Although Larson will coach the Legion, probably everything but Thursday nights, he’s spending time helping developing the younger kids, who will be future Vikings and Legion players.
Thursday night Canby got three hits and three runs off starter Sam Buysse in the third inning and rode a 3-0 lead into the fourth inning.
“We were a little lacking,” Pesch said.
Pesch inspired the players to, “Go longer in the pitch count, by taking more pitches and being selective.”
Canby pitcher Evan Stoks has had Minneota’s number last year in Junior Legion and this year in high school ball. But in the fourth, Minneota got singles from Preston Nuy and Thomas Hennen, a little help from Canby’s two errors and a run-scoring double by Jaymes Moon to take a 4-3 lead.
“This is the last time we’ll see him (Stoks)," said Pesch. “He’s having ACL surgery,” the coach added.
Minneota manufactured an insurance run in the fifth when Alex Pohlen singled home Thomas Hennen, who had doubled.
Brant Buysse came on in relief of Sam Buysse and picked up the save by preserving the 5-3 lead.
Thomas Hennen had three hits and Pohlen two, with two runs batted in.
As the season continues, “We’ll try to get Sam (Buysse) more pitching time — and others too so we can get them up to speed.”
Oh, and they're likely to have Landon Robiecki around, too!
Minneota 5, Canby 3
MINNEOTA (AB-R-H-RBI) Brant Buysse, 2b-p 4-0-1-0; Preston Nuy, cf-2b 4-1-1-0; Thomas Hennen, ss 3-2-3-2; Alex Pohlen, c 3-0-2-2; Tate Walerius, cr 0-1-0-0; Cole Sanow, cr 0-0-0-0; Landon Abraham, lf 3-1-0-0; Jaymes Moon, rf 3-0-1-0; Landon Rolbiecki, rf 0-0-0-0; Sam Buysse, p-cf 3-0-0-0; Jacob Hennen, dh 2-0-0-0; Josh Laleman, 3b 0-0-0-0; Austin Sorensen, 1b 2-0-0-0. Totals 27-5-8-3.
CANBY (AB-R-H-RBI) Tyler Sayre, cf 3-0-0-0; Nolan Harding, c 3-0-1-0; Tanner Olson, cr-rf 0-2-0-0; Caleb Greenman, ss 4-1-2-0; Evan Stoks, p 2-0-1-1; Chantz Engesmoe, 3b 2-0-1-2; Anholf, 3b 1-0-0-0; Hunter Cleveland, lf 3-0-1-0; Parker Viessman, 1b 2-0-1-0; Dillon Bruns, ph 1-0-0-0; Brye Hanson, rf 2-0-0-0; Jordan Ries, 2b 2-0-0-0; Drietz, ph 1-0-0-0. totals 26-3-7-3.
Score by Innings
Canby 003 000 0 — 3 7 4
Minneota 000 410 x — 5 8 0
E-Canby: Greenman 2, Cleveland, Ries. LOB-Minneota 6; Canby 7. SB-Canby: Harding, Greenman, Hansen. DP-Minneota 4-6-3 (5); Canby 9-3 (2). 2B-Minneota: T. Hennen, Moon; Canby: Engesmoe, Cleveland.
Pitching IP R ER H BB K
Sam Buysse (W) 5 3 3 7 3 3
Brant Buysse (S) 2 0 0 0 1 0
Stoks (L) 6 5 1 8 1 6
HP-Sorenson (by Stoks); Stoks (by Sam Buysse). WP-Stoks.