Esko baseball hosts final practice ahead of first-ever state title game

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On Wednesday, the Esko baseball team scored seven runs against Cannon Falls in the Class AA semi-final game; coming off a grand slam from Isaak Sertich to win their semifinal game 7-2 and advance to the title game.

The once-beaten Eskomos returned home on Thursday to host one last practice before trekking to St. Paul in search of a state championship. “It’s super exciting, but I feel it’s going to be more exciting tomorrow and just thinking about the game. We’ve already played Perham before so it’ll be like another game we played before. I mean it’ll be more exciting when we get to the field and see the big field and all the fans and stuff,” said Junior Pitcher and Infielder Isaak Sertich.

This marks the first time ever that the Esko will play in the state title game, making their first state tourney appearance in 23 years.

Eskomos 17-year head coach Ben Haugen and his son, senior pitcher Cale Haugen shared with WDIO how memorable this moment is. “After 17 years and thinking about all the players, all the coaches and parents and everything that’s been involved, it’s a very special moment and getting to share it with my two sons as well.”

For Cale, it’s a time of going doing memory lane and looking into the perspective of where the team is now.

“My dad has been coaching for a long time. I can remember being a little kid going to every game, going to watch them in the 2018-2019 seasons when we made it to the section finals for both those years and losing to Marshall twice. Now that I’m a part of it and it’s kinda surreal. It’s sunken in, but we still have one more game to go, so I’m not going to be content until we get that job done.”

Esko will battle Perham, a team they beat 3-0 in May for the Class 7AA title on Friday at 1 pm at CHS Field in St. Paul. The game is set for 1 p.m. Click here to see the Class AA bracket.