Skip to main content

Video: Compassion shown by Mounds View high school pitcher is sportsmanship at its very best

The first thing he did when he clinched a state berth? He went to hug his beaten friend.

When is the last time you saw an athlete, at any level, clinch a championship and instead of celebrating immediately goes to show respect for the opposing team?

It happened Wednesday night in a Minnesota high school baseball game, the section championship game between top seed Totino-Grace and Mounds View.

After striking out Jack Kocon for the final out to send Mounds View to State, pitcher Ty Koehn made a beeline for the beaten batter and embraced him, all while his teammates rushed the field, celebrating wildly.

But there's a story behind this act of tremendous sportsmanship, the pair are old friends and have known each other since childhood.

"We are very close friends," Koehn told BMTN. "I knew him from all the way back when we were 13. We were on the same little league team. It was tough when we went to separate schools but we kept in touch."

"I knew the game was going to keep going or it was going to end right there," Koehn added. "I knew I had to say something. Our friendship is more important than just the silly outcome of a game. I had to make sure he knew that before we celebrated."

"It was more instinct, it just felt right." 

The moment was caught on camera by John Hakes, who kindly sent the footage to BMTN and noted that a lot of the Mounds View and Totino-Grace players know each other from the Shoreview Area Youth Baseball league. 

Koehn is a star player for the Mustangs, and the compassion he showed is exactly what Mounds View coach Mark Downey expected of him.

"Ty's actions the other night do not surprise me and are reflective of what I might expect from any one of the players on the team," Downey said in an email to BMTN. "All really great kids, just a joy to be around on a daily basis."


– Bring Me The News is on Flipboard, you can follow us here

– Sign up for our daily newsletters.

Koehn is 3-1 with a 2.79 ERA as a pitcher and is hitting a rather robust .479 with a .560 on-base percentage at the plate. 

Totino-Grace, the top seed, had defeated Mounds View 3-2 in 13 innings in the section semifinals on June 1.

After beating Irondale to stay alive, Mounds View met with Totino again on Wednesday, needing to beat them twice to earn a fifth straight trip to State.

They won the first easily 17-10, and then again 4-0 to advance. 

Kocon was the hero in the 13-inning game mentioned above, coming through with the walk-off RBI single that gave Totino-Grace their win over Mounds View in the semifinals.

But it wasn't to be a repeat for the high schooler, as he fell to his friend as Mounds View secured their return to State.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2022-11-30 at 4.04.09 PM

Armed robbery suspect sought in two south metro investigations

The incidents took place at credit unions in Savage and Apple Valley.


Former Twin Cities plastic surgeon charged with sex crimes

Christopher Kovanda is accused of inappropriately touching woman under the guise of providing medical care.

Screen Shot 2022-11-15 at 4.23.26 PM

Minnesota man accused of murder in Chicago is arrested in Alabama

A 26-year-old man from a small town on the Iowa border is accused of murdering a Greyhound bus employee.


Support for Shakopee Public Schools employee diagnosed with cancer

The media specialist has been transitioned to hospice care recently.


Big November snowstorms uncommon in MN, but snowfall is increasing

This week's 8.4 inches at MSP Airport was one of the biggest November storms in the Twin Cities since 1991.


Minnesota nurses take vote on whether to hold second strike

The results will be determined Wednesday night.

unsplash medical marijuana

OCD, irritable bowel syndrome added to MN's medical marijuana list

They are the two latest qualifying medical conditions for Minnesota's marijuana program.

Screen Shot 2022-11-30 at 9.27.45 AM

Fundraiser created for family-owned Cô Tu' Oriental Cuisine after shooting

Support from the community will go towards medical expenses and overhead costs for the restaurant.

Erica Shameka Roberts

Police: Minnesota murder suspect arrested in Texas

Erica Roberts has been on the run since March.


Jackknifed semis close I-35 northbound near Faribault

There are icy conditions across Minnesota

court room

Red Lake man gets 12 years for murder of his cousin

Charges state the man beat the victim with a metal cabinet and its drawers.


14 baseball teams advance to MN state tourney, more Thursday

Wednesday was loaded with section finals, with even more Thursday.

High school golfer's honesty gets her disqualified from state tournament

Although it was tough to admit, this high schooler did the right thing.


Mounds View schools signals shift to distance learning for secondary students

It comes amid a surge in cases and hospitalizations in Minnesota.