After a Big Nine championship season, Owatonna baseball collected the top seed for the Section 1AAAA playoffs beginning Memorial Day weekend with a Saturday game at 1 pm at Fuller Field at Dartt's Park. The Huskies will face Rochester John Marshall. OHS beat the Rockets 18-4 April 28.

Owatonna (16-3) earned the top seed ahead of Lakeville North (12-7), who has won five straight section titles. New Prague is the third-seed.

3 KEYS TO ADVANCE

  • Depth

This will be a key for the Huskies, who just lost senior athlete of the year finalist Abe Havelka to a broken foot. Havelka was 3-0 on the mound with a .358 batting average and played solid at either corner infield spot. The Huskies are a deep team filled with athletes that excel in multiple sports. As the adage goes, "An injury gives another player an opportunity to show what they can do."

  • Smart, aggressive baseball

It is so much fun to watch the Huskies play baseball. They are solid defensively and are aggressive on the base paths. In Monday's season finale at Red Wing, a runner advanced from first to third on a groundout. Coach Tate Cummins isn't shy about sending runners home and forcing the opponent to make a play.

  • Tough section

The fact is most Section 1 titles go through Lakeville North. This Panthers team has a future Division One catcher and one of their pitchers just tossed a no-hitter. North plays in the very competitive South Suburban Conference. New Prague is a bit of a wild card. The Trojans have won plenty of games (14-5) but lost to John Marshall. Both Owatonna and New Prague lost to Minneapolis Southwest (16-3) during the tournament in St. Cloud.

SCHEDULE

In a change from year's past, there are no games scheduled on Memorial Day in Section 1AAAA.

Saturday, May 26, 1 pm
No. 8 Rochester JM at No. 1 Owatonna
No. 5 Rochester Century at No. 4 Rochester Mayo
No. 6 Farmington at No.3 New Prague
No. 7 Lakeville South at No. 2 Lakeville North
Tuesday, May 29
high seeds host winner and loser bracket games
Thursday, May 31
high seed hosts loser bracket games
Saturday, June 2 and Tuesday, June 5
Section semifinals at Dundas

Download the KRFO app to listen to Saturday's Owatonna game. Other games will be on Kat Kountry 105FM.