Blue Devils fall to 19-5 with home loss
By Paul Lecker
MARSHFIELD — For the second time in four days, the normally hot-hitting Marshfield Clinic Post 54 Senior American Legion baseball team was shut down by Eau Claire.
Hunter Black allowed just one run on six hits in a nine-inning complete-game effort to lift Eau Claire past the Blue Devils 8-1 in a nonleague matchup Tuesday night at Jack Hackman Field. It was the final home game of the season for Marshfield.
Eau Claire scored three times in the third inning and three more in the fourth to chase Marshfield starter Jack Donahue.
Jeremy Binder struck out two after allowing an RBI single to Jordan Wilson to get out of the fourth with no further damage, but the Blue Devils (19-5) could not get much going against Black.
Double plays ended the first and halted a potential rally in the second. Only two runners reached over the middle three innings before Marshfield finally scored in the seventh.
Nate McDonald had an RBI single to plate Mitch Susa, who reached on an error, and Logan Johnson followed with another single to load the bases with one out. Bobby Pilz then lined a shot to second that was snagged by Kole Lukow, who threw to first to double off Johnson and end the inning.
“They’re a good team, and we have a really good team too,” Marshfield coach John Southworth said. “I think it came down to the mental mistakes we made more than anything else. The first two innings in a scoreless game we hit into double plays. Bases loaded in the seventh, you can’t get doubled off on a line drive. We didn’t play well tonight, but that happens. This is a good group of kids, and they’ll bounce back.”
Marshfield had one hit in the eighth, but another double play ended the frame, and the Blue Devils went down in order in the ninth. Black finished with four strikeouts and one walk.
Sam Prissel had three hits, including a double and a triple, and drove in two, and Caleb Hurt had two hits and three RBIs to lead Eau Claire offensively.
“We’re 19-5. We have a good team,” Southworth said. “We’ve been playing well all year. Tonight was a clunker.”
Marshfield wraps up its regular-season schedule with road games against Stevens Point on Wednesday and Wausau on Thursday. The Blue Devils open Class AAA regional play on July 21 against Wisconsin Rapids at Bukolt Park in Stevens Point at 4:30 p.m.
(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)
Eau Claire 8, Marshfield 1
Eau Claire 003 301 010 – 8 16 2
Marshfield 000 000 100 – 1 6 0
WP: Hunter Black. LP: Jack Donahue.
SO: Black 4; Donahue (3 1/3 inn.) 2, Jeremy Binder (3 2/3 inn.) 3, Neal Matson (2 inn.) 0. BB: Black 1; Donahue 1, Binder 1, Ne. Matson 0.
Top hitters: EC, Sam Prissel 3×5, 2B, 3B, 3 runs, 2 RBIs; Jordan Wilson 4×5; Caleb Hurt 2×4, 3 RBIs; Isaac Gibson 3×4, 2B; Lukas Lanners 2B; Cole Tyman 2×5, 2 runs. M, Nathan Dupee 3B; Nate McDonald RBI.