The Champlin Logators won a Class B state game last year in a shortened season, and it was a key moment in the franchise.
But 2021 is shaping up to be even more special for the squad with the Logators off to a 7-0 start in the Metro Minny League and a 17-7 overall record.
Champlin also won the Nimrod Tournament with a 10-6 win over the New York Mills Millers June 25, a 3-2 win over the New Munich SilverStreaks June 26 and a 9-2 win over the Paynesville Pirates on June 27.
Sam Riola is on fire to start the year. He is 24-for-39 with four doubles, a triple, a home run, nine RBIs and 15 runs scored. He is batting .615, and he also has 10 stolen bases in 11 attempts.
Riola has also pitched 13 scoreless innings, allowing just six hits. He is 2-0 with one save and has 22 strikeouts and just one walk.
Jack Puder is 25-for-73 in 20 games this season for a .342 average. He has three doubles, two triples, 11 RBIs and 15 runs scored.
Ethan Mocchi is 15-for-39 (.385) with three doubles, six runs scored and eight RBIs, and Matt Marek is 11-for-32 (.344) with four doubles, three runs scored and eight RBIs.
Ryan Bruns (.327) is also batting over .300 with at least 40 plate appearances. He is 18-for-55 with five doubles, a home run, four RBIs and nine runs scored.
Jeff Heuer (.295), Bryce Nelson (.292), Reid Conlee (.286) and Derek Heldman (.256) also have double-digit hits. Heuer has a couple of homers, four doubles, 10 runs scored and 12 RBIs, and Nelson has six doubles, a triple, five RBIs and 12 runs scored.
Conlee has a double, a home run, four runs scored and eight RBIs, and Heldman has two doubles, three RBIs and nine runs scored.
Jerry Gooley is one of the leaders on the mound. He is 3-0 with a save and has allowed two earned runs on 12 hits and 11 walks in 20 innings, striking out 14.
Levi Brening is 1-1 and has 44 strikeouts in 27 2/3 innings. Alex Winslow is 3-1 with 46 strikeouts in 34 innings.
Charlie Hutchinson is 1-0 with a save. He has 23 strikeouts in 20 innings and has allowed just three earned runs. Zach Heckert is 2-2 with 18 strikeouts in 23 1/3 innings.
Nothing is won in June, but the Logators are playing at a high level as a collective unit and are ranked No. 7 in Class B baseball.
Champlin has also played well against other top teams. The Logators defeated eighth-ranked Anoka on June 23 and second-ranked Blaine on June 16. Champlin also knocked off the top-ranked Class A team Minnetonka 10-0 on May 25.
The Logators also have wins over two other Class A teams, defeating the sixth-ranked Metro Knights 13-4 on June 4 and the seventh-ranked Stockmen’s Irish 4-2 on June 8.
Champlin also pushed two other ranked teams this season, falling 2-1 to the ninth-ranked Class A St. Anthony Hogs on May 2 and 4-1 to the fifth-ranked Class B Elko Express on May 7.
Champlin 3, Blaine 1
The Logators edged second-ranked Blaine 3-1 on June 16.
Conlee was 2-for-4 with an RBI, and Riola was 2-for-3 with a run scored. Bruns had a double and two runs scored, and Nelson was 2-for-4.
Gooley allowed a run on six hits and three walks in four innings. He struck out four. Riola earned the win in relief. He allowed three hits and struck out nine in five innings.
Champlin 5, Highland Park 4
Champlin came back for a 5-4 win over Highland Park on June 20.
The Beavers scored four times in the first inning, but the Logators scored once in the first, and twice in both the fourth and sixth to get the win.
Bruns was 3-for-4 with two doubles and two RBIs, and Conlee had a home run and two RBIs. Puder was 3-for-3 with a double, a triple and a run scored, and Heuer was 2-for-4 with a run scored. Riola added two runs scored.
Brening allowed an earned run on four hits and a walk. He struck out eight. Jack Haring earned the win in relief. He walked three and hit a batter but also struck out seven in three scoreless innings.
Champlin 5, Anoka 0
The Logators added a 5-0 win over eighth-ranked Anoka on June 23.
Riola was 2-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI, and Bruns was 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored. Marek was 3-for-4 with a double and a run scored, and Heuer had a run scored and an RBI.
Conlee and Nelson also added RBIs in the win.
Gooley allowed two hits and a walk and struck out five in seven innings for the win. Riola allowed two hits and struck out three in two innings of relief.
Champlin 10, New York Mills 6
Champlin opened the Nimrod tournament June 25 with a 10-6 win over the New York Mills Millers.
Riola was 5-for-6 with a home run, a double, three RBIs and three runs scored, and Bruns was 2-for-3 with a double, a home run, two runs scored and four RBIs.
Jon Koenig was 2-for-3 with two runs scored. Heuer added an RBI, and Puder, Heckert and Aaron Buendorf all scored runs.
Winslow earned the win. He struck out nine in seven innings, allowing six runs on seven hits and two walks.