By Steve Pilz
MARSHFIELD- The Marshfield Chaparrals amateur baseball team picked an opportune time to play their best game of the season with the Wausau Riverhawks in town sporting a 7-1 Dairyland league record.
And that they did, whipping the visitors 10-1 Tuesday night at Jack Hackman Field behind their first complete game on the mound this season by Bobby Pilz.
If pitching and defense win games, then the Chaps were in good hands. Not only did Pilz go practically perfect on the hill, his defense did him one better by playing flawlessly in the field.
Throw in 13 hits with four extra bases and the Chaps had a recipe for success in a Dairyland League game that they desperately needed coming off two straight league losses.
Pilz surrendered back to back, one out singles in the first, but with a pair of flyballs to end the threat. He pitched a one-two-three second.
After a lead-off walk in the third to Wausau’s Brandon Bobert, Alex Osness bounced to short erasing Bobert. Grant Hill’s nubber never reached first or a hit and John Roberts drove in Osness with a single, the Riverhawks last of the game.
“Hats off to Bobby on a heck of a complete game win on the mound,” said Chaparral player/manager Justin Rayburn. “He really shut them down. We played great team defense behind him.”
With Pilz and his battery-mate Shawn O’Connell putting the Riverhawks on lock down, it was just up to the Chaps bats to wake up.
O’Connell himself got that party started in the third when he led off with a walk. Hunter Korger blasted a shot over the centerfielder for a double and a 1-1 tie. Jacob Neve scored Korger with a scorcher to right. Neve got to third on some sketchy throwing decisions and Luke Wirtz lifted a fly ball to right to score him.
Justin Rayburn beat out an infield grounder but the third baseman threw anyway, and Rayburn got all the way to third on the errant throw. Nate McDonald drove in the run and the Chaps were up 4-1.
Four more in the sixth salted the game away and then some.
Nick Anderson beat out a groundball for a hit to lead off. After an out, O’Connell singled, Korger doubled again for a pair of runs, Neve got an infield single, Wirtz had an RBI single and Rayburn a fielder’s choice ground-out for an 8-1 lead, effectively chasing Warhawk starter Hill.
After Pilz had walked the first batter in the fourth he went on to retire 18 of the next 19 including the last 14 of the game. The perennially potent Wausau bats never got anything going and Pilz disseminated his 27 outs all around with 11 grounders, 11 fly balls and 5 strikeouts. He surrendered just four hits and three bases on balls. He allowed one earned run in his 129 pitches.
All that was in doubt now was the final score, and Sam Schwanebeck provided that in the eighth.
With Jordan Huenerfuss replacing Hill, Anderson got his second single of the game. Schwanebeck, just back from a groin strain, hit a line drive just inside the left field foul pole and clear out of Hackman Field for his first home run of the season and a 10-1 final.
Rayburn concluded, intimating that he may have needed some help prying Pilz off the mound.
“He (Pilz) kept saying he felt good, so I let him go. I don’t like having a guy throw that many pitches but it was a warm night and he really wasn’t laboring.”
The Chaps take the field again Wednesday, July 17 at 7:30pm against Everest.
Chaparrals 10, River Hawks 1
Wausau 001 000 000 — 1 4 3
Marshfield 004 004 20x — 10 13 0
WP- Bobby Pilz. LP- Grant Hill
SO- Hill (6 inn.) 5, Jordan Huenerfuss (2 inn.) 3. Pilz ( 9 inn.) 5.. BB- Hill 1, Pilz 3.
Top Hitters: Marshfield- Shawn O’Connell 2×3, Hunter Korger 2×4 2 2B 2 RBI, Luke Wirtz 2×4 3B 2 RBI, Jake Neve 2×4 RBI, Nick Anderson 2×4, Sam Schwanebeck 1×4 HR 2 RBI.
Records- Wausau 7-2 Dairyland League. Marshfield 7-6 overall, 6-3 Dairyland League.