This is actually more of a Pelzer story than a Laudenbach or Voigt story. Ultimately, it’s mostly a St. Augusta/Stearns County story perhaps best told on the diamond behind the St. Mary Help of Christians Catholic Church.
There are at least three cousins, depending on who’s counting, on the St. Cloud Tech softball team and the Tigers are having a very good season.
They are among the Central Lakes Conference leaders heading into Thursday’s doubleheader at Fergus Falls and going into today’s home game against Brainerd.
First, some introductions.
Lindsey Laudenbach is a senior shortstop/second baseman. Emma Laudenbach is a junior second baseman/shortstop. They are cousins. So is Lindsay Voigt, a junior catcher.
“All of our grandmas are sisters,” Emma Laudenbach said.
The grandmothers are Pelzers. Emma’s grandmother is Marlene, Lindsey’s is Adeline and Voigt’s is Luella.
But it’s more involved than that.
“It’s kind of complicated,” Emma Laudenbach said.
Sisters Marlene and Adeline Pelzer are married to Laudenbach brothers. They’ve got the double- first-cousin thing going on.
“We’re double related,” Lindsey Laudenbach said.
They are also really good softball players. Tech head coach Sarena Diederichs has moved the Laudenbachs between second and short because she said she can’t decide which is better where. They definitely work well together. Tech is 5-2 in the CLC heading into Fergus Falls, putting them just behind Alexandria and Rocori in the standings.
“We have a real good chemistry,” Lindsey Laudenbach said. “We’ve been playing together since like seventh grade.”
“Actually, longer than that,” Emma Laudenbach said.
They’re Laudenbachs and Voigts. They’ve been playing some form of ball as long as they can remember.
“My dad is like, ‘You have to play,'” Voigt said. “It wasn’t a choice.”
Not that she minds.
“I love it,” Voigt said.
St. Augusta connection
All three are from St. Augusta. They all played softball in the Central Valley Little League and in the Parochial Athletic Association in elementary school for St. Mary Help of Christians.
Their fathers/uncles/cousins/grandparents all played baseball, too.
“We have a family softball tournament in Luxemburg every summer,” Lindsey Laudenbach said.
They were in the same family day care and would play baseball or softball.
“I went to her (Emma’s) grandma’s daycare,” Voigt said.
Lindsey’s parents are Dean and Sheila (Meyer) Laudenbach. Her brothers are Nathan, 24, and Michael, 20.
Emma’s parents are Mark and Dana (Stang) Laudenbach. She has two sisters, Grace, 13, and Olivia 8.
Voigt’s parents are David and Jeanne (Klaverkamp) Voigt. She has a sister, Stephanie, and twin brothers Isaac and Trevor, 10.
Guess what? All of them are involved in sports.
“You pretty much grew up with it,” Lindsey Laudenbach said.
“In the summer, we all played pickup games with everybody,” Voigt said.
“It runs in the family,” Emma Laudenbach said. “You can say that.”
And the cousins thing? Well, it’s not that big a deal to them.
“We really don’t think about it,” Lindsey Laudenbach said.
“It’s just something you grew up with,” Emma Laudenbach said.
Today’s home game at 5 p.m. at Discovery Elementary School in Waite Park is one of only three Tech has this season because of the unusually long winter that mostly wiped out many games in April.
It has led to a hectic May.
“We got done on Tuesday and I was so tired I didn’t even want to do any homework,” Voigt said.
But the fatigue won’t last long. The Tigers are a mere two weeks from the playoffs. It has gone fast.
It means Lindsey Laudenbach is closing in on her last game for Tech. She’s headed to Winona State to major in nursing and has no plans to continue playing softball.
After the season, her games with her cousins will be confined to the family softball tournament in Luxemburg, at least for now.