Blue Devils play in elimination game at 7 p.m. Wednesday
By Paul Lecker
MARSHFIELD — It was one of those games for the Marshfield Clinic Post 54 American Legion baseball team.
The Blue Devils fell behind 5-0 early and could not recover, losing 9-3 to Wausau Post 10 in a second-round game at the Class AAA regional Tuesday night at Jack Hackman Field.
Marshfield (22-6), which defeated Stevens Point 15-3 earlier in the day in its regional opener, will play the winner of Wednesday’s first game between Stevens Point and Plover in an elimination game at 7 p.m. Wednesday night.
Wausau scored an unearned run against Marshfield starter Jack Donahue in the first inning and added four more in the second as the Bulldogs had four singles. Paul Weise had the big hit in the inning, delivering a two-out, two-RBI single to make it 5-0.
That was more than enough for Wausau pitcher Grant Hill, who went the distance, throwing just 106 pitches in nine innings. Marshfield had nine hits against the right-hander, but the Blue Devils had a runner thrown out at home plate and hit into two double plays.
The Blue Devils played without their No. 3 hitter and starting shortstop Trevor Schwecke, who was hit by a pitch in the win over Stevens Point and suffered an injury to his left arm. His availability is up in the air for the remainder of the regional tournament.
“We had to shuffle people around in that first game with Trevor getting hurt in the first game with a ball hitting him in the elbow,” Marshfield manager Tom Sorenson said. “Paul (Maguire) hasn’t played third base all year, but as a catcher he can react and did a great job there. There were a couple of mental errors and pitching mistakes — when you have it 0-2 (no balls, two strikes) and you give a guy a good pitch to hit. They’re young and learning all the time.”
Marshfield cut it to 5-3 when Bobby Pilz had an RBI infield single and Hunter Luepke scored on an error in the second, and Donahue had an RBI double in the third to plate Paul Maguire.
After that Marshfield had only five baserunners, and two of them were erased on double plays.
Wausau added three runs in the final two innings against Marshfield reliever Jason Kurth to finish off the scoring.
Despite the loss, Sorenson said he still feels the Blue Devils are in a good position to rebound in the regional because of their deep pitching staff.
“We’re still in the driver’s seat as far as I’m concerned,” Sorenson said. “We’ll face someone who we have beat two or three times already (this summer), so that just gives you confidence.
“We still have Jake Brueggen and Mitch Susa to pitch, so we’re good for the next two games. Cole Hoffman can relieve, Bobby (Pilz) could come back in a few days for a couple of innings, so we’re in good shape with pitching.”
Marshfield 15, Stevens Point 3
The Blue Devils scored multiple runs in four of their six at-bats, plating four or more three times, on the way to the rout in seven innings.
Nate McDonald, Maguire, and Luepke each had two hits; Donahue drove in a pair of runs; and McDonald scored three times for Marshfield. With the RBI in the game against Wausau, Donahue now has 49 RBIs this season, breaking the team record of 46 set by Daulton Varsho in 2013.
Bobby Pilz earned the win with a complete-game effort, striking out four, walking two and scattering eight hits.
Pilz gave up two runs in the second, only one was earned, and was able to wiggle out of trouble in the fifth.
With Marshfield leading 6-2, Pilz walked a pair and had an error attempting to pick a runner off of first. With the bases loaded, Brady Erickson had a sacrifice fly to score Gus Turner-Zick before Pilz struck out the next batter to get out of the jam.
Marshfield responded with four runs in the bottom of the inning without the aid of a hit. A hit batter, three walks, an error, and four wild pitches allowed the Blue Devils to build a 10-2 lead.
The Blue Devils put the game away in the sixth scoring five more times. Cole Hoffman had an RBI single, Braden Bohman was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, and Kurth delivered a sacrifice fly to finish off the scoring.
(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)
Bulldogs 9, Blue Devils 3
Wausau 130 100 012 – 9 11 3
Marshfield 021 000 000 – 3 9 4
WP: Grant Hill. LP: Jack Donahue.
SO: Hill 3; Donahue (7 inn.) 5, Jason Kurth (2 inn.) 0. BB: Hill 0; Donahue 3, Kurth 0.
Top hitters: W, Logan Grunenwald 2×4, 2 runs; Paul Weise 2 RBIs; Chandler Fochs 3B; Ben Schubring 2×5; Garrett Hohn 2×4, 3 runs. M, Donahue 2×4, 2B; Hunter Luepke 3×4.
Blue Devils 15, Sixers 3
Stevens Point 020 010 0 – 3 8 3
Marshfield 240 045 x – 15 10 2
WP: Bobby Pilz. LP: Matt Helms.
SO: Helms (3 inn.) 3, Zach Ksicinski (1 1/3 inn.) 3, Ryan Glodowski (1 2/3 inn.) 0; Pilz 4. BB: Helms 3, Ksicinski 3, Glodowski 0; Pilz 2.
Top hitters: SP, Gus Turner-Zick 2×4; Hunter Lodzinski 2B; Brady Franz 2×3; Joe Strigel 2×3. M, Nate McDonald 2×3, 3 runs; Jack Donahue 2 RBIs; Mitch Susa 2 runs; Paul Maguire 2×3, 2B, 2 runs; Cole Hoffmann 2 runs; Jared Klein 2 runs; Hunter Luepke 2×3, 2 runs.
2016 Class AAA Legion Baseball Regional
July 19-22 at Jack Hackman Field, Marshfield
Tuesday, July 19
Game 1 – Marshfield 15, Stevens Point 3
Game 2 – D.C. Everest 11, Plover 1
Game 3 – Wausau 9, Marshfield 3
Wednesday, July 20
Game 4 – Stevens Point vs. Plover, 1 p.m.
Game 5 – D.C. Everest vs. Wausau, 4 p.m.
Game 6 – Game 4 winner vs. Marshfield, 7 p.m.
Thursday, July 21
Game 7 – Game 6 winner vs. Game 5 loser, 4 p.m.
Game 8 – Game 5 winner vs. Game 7 winner, 7 p.m.
Friday, July 22
*Game 9 – Game 8 winner vs. Game 8 loser, 4 p.m. (*if Game 8 loser suffered first loss of tournament)