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Game to benefit Wounded Warriors

Charity trumps rivalry

Published: Wednesday, April 16, 2014 12:06 a.m. CDT

When Morrison visits Fulton for a baseball doubleheader on Monday, a bigger purpose will be served than trying to inch up the Three Rivers North standings.

The games will also serve as a fundraiser for the Wounded Warrior Project, which provides aid for injured military service members.

Steamers coach Kyle Miller approached Mustangs coach Ben Sondgeroth about 2 months ago about having some sort of charity game. When Miller suggested it benefit the Wounded Warrior Project, Sondgeroth called it a “no-brainer.”

Both coaches have ties to the project. Miller’s father, Junior, is active in the American Legion in his hometown of Miles, Iowa, and that organization has had numerous fundraisers for the Wounded Warrior Project.

Sondgeroth has a cousin, Adam Alexander, who was seriously wounded while stationed in Afghanistan more than 2 years ago. Alexander, who was originally from Potosi, Wis., was shot in the head while his base was under attack.

“I was sitting in a deer stand at 6:30 in the morning when I got a call from my dad,” Sondgeroth said, “and I just knew something was horribly wrong. It turned out my cousin got shot in Afghanistan, and it wasn’t looking good.”

Alexander had immediate surgery in Afghanistan, another one shortly after than in Germany, and many more at a military hospital in Bethesda, Md., before being able to come back home. He is now married and living in Oshkosh, Wis.

“The Wounded Warrior Project has really helped my cousin get back to living as normal a life as he can live,” Sondgeroth said.

There will be a military theme when the Mustangs tangle with the Steamers on Monday. American Legion Posts from Morrison and Fulton will present the colors before the game. Both teams will be wearing camouflage uniforms, with a local businessman, Trent Yenney of Country Financial, picking up the bulk of the tab for that.

“The Wounded Warrior logo,” Sondgeroth said, “will be bigger than our school logos that day.”

Members of both teams have been soliciting local businesses to donate to the cause, whether it be money or goods and services that can be raffled off. There will also be a bake sale and a 50/50 raffle.

“As big a rivals as we are,” Miller said, “everyone involved will realize there are things bigger than the outcome of a baseball game. It’s about the men and women who serve our country, and what we do to help them when they come home.”

Morrison at Fulton

When: 4:30 p.m. Monday

Where: Drives Field, Fulton

FYI: Games will include activities to benefit Wounded Warrior Project.

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