Blue Devils now 19-4, host Eau Claire for two Wednesday
By Paul Lecker
MARSHFIELD — The Marshfield Clinic Post 54 Senior American Legion baseball team is not just hot. It is scorching.
The Blue Devils ripped out 16 hits, batted around in two separate innings, and rolled past Plover 20-7 in a Wisconsin Valley Legion League matchup Tuesday night at Jack Hackman Field.
Marshfield, ranked fifth in this week’s Class AAA state rankings, has won 11 of its last 12 games, including six in a row, and is now 19-4 and 7-2 in the WVLL. The Blue Devils wrap up their regular-season schedule with a nonleague doubleheader against second-ranked Eau Claire on Wednesday and a WVLL game against Wausau on Thursday, both at home.
Heading into the Class AAA regionals July 19-22 and the state tournament July 26-30, which will both be at Hackman Field, the Blue Devils are showing they are a team to be reckoned with in the postseason.
“As a team we are hitting right around .400, and tonight we had 16 hits, no errors,” Marshfield coach Tom Sorenson said. “I told the kids in the beginning we have a great defense, so the pitcher has to keep that in mind. You don’t have to strike everybody out. Challenge the hitters, and it’s working.”
Marshfield jumped on Plover starting pitcher Cam Lee, chasing him from the game before he got out of the first inning.
An error, three walks, and five hits led to nine runs in the opening inning for the Blue Devils. Jack Donahue had a sacrifice fly to score the first run; Mitch Susa, Paul Maguire, Nate McDonald, and Trevor Schwecke had RBI singles in the frame; and Braden Bohman added a two-run single for Marshfield.
Hunter Luepke added a two-run double in the second to make it 11-2.
Maguire clubbed a home run to lead off the fourth — Bohman and Schwecke also had RBI singles in the inning — before Marshfield put the game out of reach with sixth more in the fifth, highlighted by a three-run double by Donahue.
“This year we had a lot of new players from Stratford, Greenwood, a lot of new players,” said Schwecke, the Blue Devils’ shortstop. “It’s always awkward at first because you don’t know everybody, but once we got it together we found it … the last 10 or 12 games with the run we’ve made.”
Donahue allowed five runs in six innings, striking out 10, to earn the victory to improve to 4-1 this season. He also has 39 strikeouts in 36 2/3 innings pitched, leading the team in both categories. His three RBIs also gives him a team-best 36 RBIs in 23 games.
Bohman, Schwecke, and Maguire each had three hits; seven of the Blue Devils’ nine starters drove in at least one run; and all but one starter scored at least once.
(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)
Blue Devils 20, Black Sox 7
Plover 020 003 2 – 7 8 2
Marshfield 920 360 x – 20 16 0
WP: Jack Donahue. LP: Cam Lee.
SO: Lee (2/3 inn.) 1, Gavin Erbes (3 1/3 inn.) 4, Carter Newby (2 inn.) 2; Donahue (6 inn.) 10, Trevor Schwecke (1 inn.) 1. BB: Lee 3, Erbes 1, Newby 1; Donahue 4, Schwecke 1.
Top hitters: P, Aaron Baker 2×2, 2 runs; Newby 2×2, 2B, 3 RBIs. M, Nate McDonald 2×5, 4 runs; Braden Bohman 3×4, 3 runs, 3 RBIs; Schwecke 3×4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs; Donahue 2B, 3 RBIs; Mitch Susa 2×4, 3 runs; Paul Maguire 3×5, HR, 4 runs, 2 RBIs; Bobby Pilz 2 runs; Hunter Luepke 2B, 2 RBIs.
Records: Plover not reported; Marshfield 19-4, 7-2 Wisconsin Valley Legion League.