By Steve Pilz For Zaleski Sports
MARSHFIELD – The Marshfield Chaparrals amateur baseball team got back in the win column Wednesday night and further solidified their run at the playoffs by beating Westboro 6-5 at Jack Hackman Field, running their Dairyland League record to 7-3.
Wednesday’s game was a make-up from the previous Saturday and was scheduled to be played in Westboro. When that didn’t happen, the game was moved to Marshfield, and shortened to seven innings with Marshfield the visitor on the scoreboard.
That last fact had little effect on the Chaps as they jumped on Trojans starter Marshall Westfall early and often. Nate McDonald led off with a walk for the second straight night and Justin Rayburn singled. Luke Wirtz’s double to dead center brought McDonald in. Sam Schwanebeck’s sacrifice fly scored Rayburn and when the third baseman bobbled Jason Kurth’s grounder, Wirtz scored for a 3-0 lead.
Chaps starting pitcher Bobby Pilz helped his own cause beating out an infield single to lead off the second. He got to second on Connor Jasurda’s groundout. Three pitches later, when the catcher lobbed the ball to Westfall, Pilz pulled a delayed steal of third and when Westfall’s throw sailed wide, Pilz put Marshfield up 4-0 when he crossed the plate.
Pilz surrendered his only earned run of the game in the third inning when the Trojans got a pair of singles wrapped around two walks and now trailed 4-1.
Pilz pitched a 1-2-3 fourth and was on his way to his second consecutive complete game.
Two infield errors produced an unearned run in the fifth for the Trojans.
The Chaps got that one back in the top of the sixth on Jasurda’s sacrifice fly to make it 5-2.
Two more infield errors in the sixth got the Trojans a couple more unearned runs and things were getting dicey at 5-4.
The Chaps plated a huge insurance run in their last at-bat. Rayburn led off with a double, his third hit of the game. Wirtz lashed a liner to left that the centerfielder grabbed in a hurry, but when Rayburn deked the fielder into thinking he may pull up at third, the throw went to second and Rayburn deftly cut the bag at third and loped across the plate without a throw making it 6-4.
Pilz got a grounder to short and caught an attempted bunt in the air for the first two outs in the last inning before Westfall dumped a ball into right for a hit. Another inexplicable error, giving the Chaps five errors in the last three innings, allowed yet another unearned run, but Pilz struck out Dalton Strebig for the third time to end the game.
Pilz needed 113 pitches to notch his fifth win of the season against two losses. He struck out eight, scattered eight hits and gave up four walks. Only one of the five runs for the Trojans was earned.
Rayburn led the Chaps going 3-for-4 with a double and two runs scored. Pilz went 2-for-3, Wirtz was 2-for-4 with a double and two RBIs, and Korger was also 2-for-4.
On Tuesday, Marshfield dropped a non-league game at Eau Claire, losing to the Cavaliers 10-7.
Marshfield led 4-0 after 1 ½ innings before Eau Claire cut it half with a two-run second, and scored seven times in the fourth and fifth innings to pull ahead.
The Chaps cut into the deficit with a three-run ninth, but couldn’t get any closer.
Wirtz had three hits and two RBIs, Pilz had a single, a double and an RBI, and Nick Anderson also had a pair of hits for the Chaparrals.
The Chaparrals will travel to Minocqua on Saturday for a league game at 1:30 p.m. before returning home for their final home game on Sunday against Spirit at 1:30 p.m.
Chaparrals 6, Trojans 5 Marshfield 310 001 1 – 6 11 5 Westboro 001 012 1 – 5 8 3 WP: Bobby Pilz. LP: Marshall Westfall. SO: Pilz (7 inn.) 8; Westfall (7 inn.) 3. BB: Pilz 4; Westfall 2. Top hitters: M, Justin Rayburn 3×4, 2B; Pilz 2×3; Luke Wirtz 2×4, 2B 2 RBIs; Hunter Korger 2×4. Records: Marshfield 8-8 overall, 7-3 Dairyland League; Westboro not reported.