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Luverne Redbirds open season with win

Lead Summary
Jason Berghorst

Local baseball fans have been waiting months for the game to start.
The high school season was canceled due to coronavirus restrictions, and summer teams have also faced delays.
The Luverne Redbirds amateur team is one of over 250 “town ball” teams governed by the Minnesota Baseball Association.
The MBA has been working with the governor’s office to develop guidelines that will allow baseball to be played this summer in Minnesota.
Recently the MBA announced that Minnesota teams can play out-of-state games until in-state games are approved.
The Redbirds traveled 13 miles west to Valley Springs, South Dakota, to take on the Brandon Valley Rats Thursday, June 4.
Luverne manager Brooks Mauer said there were some changes to the game experience to factor in social distancing.
“The teams didn’t shake hands after the game,” Mauer said. “That was probably the biggest thing.”
Mauer also noted that there were no concessions sold and most fans brought their own seating and spread out around the field.
For now, the Redbirds have two more games scheduled in South Dakota. The team travels to Castlewood to play two different teams this Saturday.
“We’re hoping to find out soon when and if we can play home games,” Mauer said.
Luverne 4, BV 3
Luverne scored its first run of the delayed season when Skyler Wenninger was sent home by a Tyler Reisdorfer hit to the short stop in the fourth inning.
Phil Paquette hit a triple in the eighth inning, but Luverne was unable to score any runs.
 The Redbirds trailed the Rats 3-1 entering the top of the ninth inning.
Ben Serie and Reisdorfer were on base when Jake Haugen hit a three-run homerun to clear the bases and give Luverne a 4-3 lead.
The Redbird defense and Reisdorfer on the mound held Brandon Valley scoreless in the bottom of the ninth to earn the victory.
Haugen pitched the first three innings for Luverne and Derek Lundgren took the mound for the next three innings.
Serie then pitched one inning before Reisdorfer closed out the game and earned the win.
Redbird manager Brooks Mauer said he and his team were happy to not only get the first win, but just to play the first game.
“It was the first time it’s felt like a normal night for several months,” Mauer said.
“It was just good to be out on the field and back around baseball.”
Box score                 AB  H  R  BI
Nath                           3     0   0   0
Beers                        4     0   0   0
Paquette                    3     1   0   0
Wenninger                4     0   1   0
Serie                         3     1   1   0
Reisdorfer                 4     0   1   0
Lundgren                   4     0   0   0
Norman                     2     2   0   0
Gonzalez                  1     0   0   0
Haugen                      2     1   0   0
Brown                        2     0   0   0

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