The 2014 American Legion baseball season opened in Albion with a Memorial Day doubleheader at Leon Nelson Field.
It was a successful start to the summer campaign for the local nines as Albion Cornerstone Legion eked out one-run victories in the Junior and Senior contests.
The Cornerstone Juniors built a 4-0 lead in the opening game, then held off a rally by Shelton/Gibbon/Wood River/Ravenna to notch a 4-3 win. The game ended after six innings due to the two-hour time limit.
Kyle Kramer shut the visitors down in the first three innings – escaping a bases-loaded jam in the third – before giving way to Keaton Henry. The visitors tallied for the first time in the fifth, plating three runs and advancing a runner to second before Henry slammed the door with consecutive strikeouts.
The Cornerstone Seniors secured their first win of the season with a 1-0 decision over Shelton/Gibbon in a taut, well-played nightcap.
Albion pitcher Tyler Hedlund headlined the victory with a two-hit shutout, surviving a pair of threats by the visitors. Cornerstone left fielder Zac Glidden threw out Shelton/Gibbon’s Gideon at the plate to end the top of the third inning and Hedlund stranded a baserunner at third with a strikeout to end the fourth.
Cornerstone scored the game’s only run in the sixth as Alex Pelster reached on a Shelton/Gibbon error with two outs, stole second base and raced home on Pierce Koch’s single.
Hedlund set the visitors down 1-2-3 in the seventh to seal the decision.