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A grand opening for Darlington
Times photo: Jim Winter Darlington player Levi Nagel, 11, combats Wednesdays warmth and humidity by hiding in the shade and enjoying a Gatorade and a freeze-pop a few hours before the teams game. Order photo
DARLINGTON - Darlington's Cole McDonald played the role of a superhero slugger to a tee in the first round of the Cal Ripken 12-year-old state tournament on Wednesday.

McDonald, 11 helped Darlington erase a 3-0 deficit against Superior by crushing a go-ahead grand slam in the third inning.

Darlington held on for a thrilling 5-4 win over Superior.

McDonald had a game most players dream about serving as a force on the mound as well as the plate.

McDonald pitched four innings to get the win. He pitched out of a two on no-out jam in the sixth.

"It was the Cole McDonald show all night," state tournament director Scott Heinberg said.

Darlington advances to the second round of the state tournament where they will play Stevens Point at 11:30 a.m. today.