You couldn’t have asked for a better night, heat, no wind, and a huge crowd to watch Forest City and Lake Mills battle for a conference title. Lake Mills got down early, but capitalize on an error filled inning to beat Forest City 6-3, and win the Top of Iowa West.
Wednesday, after beating North Iowa and hearing Forest City lost to Bishop Garrigan, head coach Chris Throne was happy, but not satisfied. The Bulldogs clinched at least a share of the title that night, but they wanted more – they wanted it to themselves. Following the game, and his ice-cold bath, Throne was happy for his guys.
Forest City jumped out early, the Indians scored three runs in the bottom of the first inning. Reese Moore roped a two RBI double to the left-center field wall and would later come home to score. The double was the sixth on the season for Moore, who also have three homers. But from there, it was Lake Mills starting pitcher Casey Hanson’s night. The Bulldogs junior came into the game with some of the areas best numbers. Tonight, Hanson went all seven inning allowing only one earned run, struck out eight, and only walked two. Coach Throne says that’s the type of player Hanson is, struggles through an inning, but doesn’t get down on himself.
Lake Mills took the lead for good scoring four runs in the top of the third inning. They added one run in the fourth, and one in the sixth; all while Hanson keep the Indians off the board.
This is the first conference title for Lake Mills since 2001, and will give the Bulldogs some momentum heading into the final week and postseason. Coach Throne says the guys will enjoy this one over the holiday weekend, before heading back to work on Monday.
Lake Mills has tough stretch ahead of them. Monday they travel to Osage, Tuesday they host St. Ansgar, New Hampton on Wednesday, Estherville Lincoln Central Thursday, and then open the postseason Saturday against Central Springs. If both teams win in the first round, Lake Mills will get a shot at three-time defending Class 1A State Champions Newman Catholic in the second round.