Recent Stillwater graduate Connor Johnston has been selected to play in this weekend’s Minnesota High School Baseball All-Star Series at Chaska Athletic Park.
Johnston, who set a single-season record for the Ponies while batting .500 this past spring, will play for the East Metro Team in the 39th annual event. The East Metro squad will open play against the South team today at 3 p.m. Then on Saturday, the Metro East will meet the North team at 10 a.m., and close out the round-robin tournament against the Metro West squad at 6 p.m.
Following practice on Thursday, each of the 20-player teams attended a banquet featuring guest speaker Paul Molitor at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska.
Joining Johnston on the East Metro roster from the Suburban East Conference are Ben Buerkle of Roseville, Beau Fandel of Forest Lake, Nick Lacina and Rob Mouton of Cretin-Derham Hall, and Ryan Winter of Woodbury. The team is coached by Mike Brown of St. Paul Academy, Mike Streitz of St. Agnes and Kevin Engstrom of Eastview.
There are 28 past participants of this all-star series who have gone on to play in the major leagues, including current Twins players Glen Perkins of Stillwater and Joe Mauer of Cretin-Derham Hall, who were roommates during the 2001 series. The list of former Twins who participated in this event include: Tim Laudner (1976), Jim Eisenreich (1977), Terry Steinbach (1980) and Kent Hrbek (1978).
Johnston helped lead the Ponies to a 14-10 record, including 10-8 to place fourth in the SEC standings.
The all-star series is presented by the Minnesota State High School Baseball Coaches Association, Play Ball! Minnesota, BiG Athletics, and Cambria.
Heacox, Lightning prevail
Stillwater senior Hannah Heacox helped the Lightning collect two victories in the 25th Annual Minnesota High School All-Star Girls Softball Series on June 9 at Caswell Park in North Mankato. Heacox had some familiar faces in the dugout for those games with Ponies coaches Bob Beedle and Roger Stippel calling the shots.
Heacox helped lead the Ponies to their second straight state tournament and a 20-5 record this spring.
Contact Stuart Groskreutz at [email protected]