By Paul Lecker
MARSHFIELD – The Wisconsin Rapids Rangers ended Marshfield’s season, and kept its hopes of a state tournament berth alive, with a 9-6 win in a Class AAA American Legion baseball regional elimination game Friday afternoon at Jack Hackman Field.
Wisconsin Rapids (11-3) moves on to its third elimination game of the tournament Thursday night against the loser of the Plover-Stevens Point game, which begins at 4 p.m. Marshfield finishes its season at 12-11.
The Rangers scored multiple runs in the second, fourth and fifth innings, then held off a later rally by Marshfield to finish off the victory.
Marshfield took a quick 2-0 lead on RBI singles by Chandler Schmidt in the first inning and Peter Earll in the second.
Wisconsin Rapids responded with four runs in the bottom of the second against Marshfield starter Noah Grimm. Jacob Dekarske had an RBI single, Zachary Nowak delivered a sacrifice fly, and two runs scored on a throwing error, giving the Rangers a 4-2 lead.
Ryan Sering had an RBI single and Tyler Beyer was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded in the fourth, pushing the Rangers’ advantage to 6-2.
Wisconsin Rapids added three more in the fifth against Blue Devils’ reliever Nick Urban. Jacob Wipfli walked, and Dekarske and Cole Ladick singled to load the bases. Two wild pitches allowed Wipfli and Dekarske to score, and Austin Junemann had an RBI single, pushing the Rangers’ lead to 9-2.
Marshfield put up a fight in the bottom of the seventh. After only three batters reached base against Wisconsin Rapids pitcher Jordan Tibbets since the second, the Blue Devils chased him out of the game after four consecutive singles in the seventh.
Urban and Schmidt knocked in runs with hits and Wisconsin Rapids brought in Erick Steinhilber to the mound. A fielder’s choice grounder by Dayne Diethelm plated another run and Chase Higgins followed with an RBI single, cutting the score to 9-6. Cam Daul had a single to load the bases again before Steinhilber coaxed a fly ball to end the game.
Earll was 3-for-3 with a walk and an RBI, Schmidt had two hits and two RBIs, and Higgins and Daul both had two hits for Marshfield.
Junemann and Dekarske each had two hits and an RBI to lead Rapids, which finished with nine hits.
Rangers 9, Blue Devils 6
Marshfield 110 000 4 - 6 11 1
Wisconsin Rapids 040 230 x - 9 9 1
WP: Jordan Tibbetts. LP: Noah Grimm.
SO: Grimm (3 2/3 inn.) 1, Nick Urban (1 1/3 inn.) 2, Dayne Diethelm (1 inn.) 1; Tibbetts (6 1/3 inn.) 3, Erick Steinhilber (2/3 inn.) 0. BB: Grimm 3, Urban 1, Diethelm 0; Tibbetts 3, Steinhilber 0.
Top hitters: M, Peter Earll 3x3, 2 runs, RBI; Chandler Schmidt 2x4, 2 RBIs; Chase Higgins 2x3, RBI; Cam Daul 2x3. WR, Austin Junemann 2x4, RBI; Jacob Wipfli 2 runs; Jacob Dekarske 2x3, 2 runs, RBI; Cole Ladick 2 runs.
Records: Marshfield 12-11; Wisconsin Rapids 11-3.
Class AAA American Legion Baseball Tournament Double-elimination, at Jack Hackman Field, Marshfield
Wednesday, July 21
Game 1 – Stevens Point (12-6) 10, Wisconsin Rapids (9-3) 5
Game 3 – Plover (15-8) 3, D.C. Everest 2
Game 2 – Marshfield (12-9) 8, Wausau (13-13) 6 (8 inn.)
Thursday, July 22
Game 4 – Wisconsin Rapids (10-3) 1, Wausau (13-14) 0
Game 5 – Stevens Point (13-6) 6, D.C. Everest 4
Game 6 – Plover (16-8) 6, Marshfield (12-10) 3
Friday, July 23
Game 7 – Wisconsin Rapids (11-3) 9, Marshfield (12-11) 6
Game 8 – Stevens Point (13-6) vs. Plover (16-8), 4 p.m.
Game 9 – Wisconsin Rapids (11-3) vs. Game 8 loser, 7 p.m.
Saturday, July 24
Game 10 – Game 8 winner vs. Game 9 winner, 1 p.m.
If Game 10 loser suffered first loss: Game 11 – Game 10 winner vs. Game 10 loser, 4 p.m.