Redbirds Soar To Title
For the third straight year, the Marinette Redbirds finished atop the Wishigan League regular season standings. Coach Nick Brukardt saw his diamond flock improve to 11-0 following a 4-1 Wednesday beating of Menominee and 8-0 over Crivitz Sunday.
Now sporting a 15-5 overall readout, Marinette owns a 2 1/2 game lead over second place Felch with one outing left.
Felch (9-3) came up with a pair of wins Sunday without even stepping on the field. Seems that Escanaba was short on players and forfeited a doubleheader to the Rangers.
Tri-City sits in third place at 8-5 following a twinbill forfeit from Kingsford while Menominee used a sweep of Gillett to sneak into fourth place at 6-6. The Storm posted wins of 9-2 and 7-3 in a late season surprise.
Crivitz (5-10 overall) and Gillett share fifth place in the league at 5-7 each.
Only two games will be played on the final weekend of action as Marinette hosts Menominee and Felch travels to Gillett. Both games begin at 1pm Sunday.
A 3-game league playoff slate will be held at Pedersen Park in Marinette on Sunday, August 19. Earning post-season berths are Marinette, Felch, Tri-City and Menominee.
Marinette has claimed the past two playoff championships.
Redbirds Notch 4-1
Victory Over Storm
With Aaron and Cody Woods combining for 14 strikeouts, Marinette remained perfect in the Wishigan League with a 4-1 Wednesday win over Menominee.
Southpaw Aaron Woods registered 11 whiffs over 8 scoreless innings before Cody fanned the side while giving up a run.
The Redbirds were rolling in the opening frame as leadoff swinger Jordan Rasner walked, stole second before racing home on a wild pitch.
Pushing across another run without benefit of a hit in the third inning, Marinette upped the margin to 2-0.
Cully Falkenberg walked, advanced to second base on a steal before scoring on a groundout to third off the bat of Adam Francour.
Marinette finally notched its first hit in the fourth inning as Cody Woods got aboard on an error, moved to third on a single by Chad Rasmussen before heading home on a sac fly from number nine batter Ryan Johnson.
Consecutive one out hits by Jason Hofer (single) and Francour (double) resulted in a 4-0 Redbird lead in the fourth. A walk to Aaron Woods and another wild pitch plated Hofer.
Looking to break the game open, Marinette saw Francour rip his second two-bagger in the seventh and Todd Olsen a single. The rally was short-circuited when Francour was gunned down at the plate on a throw from centerfielder Taylor Garceau.
After setting down 10 straight batters from the fifth through the 8th innings, Aaron Woods gave way to Cody Woods for the 9th.
Two errors on shortstop Johnson allowed Matt Lund to tally the lone Menominee run while Woods fanned Garceau, Brett Schacht and Kevin Betts in the frame.
Cody Uecke hurled 6 innings for Menominee to take the loss, giving up 4 runs on 4 hits with 7 walks and one strikeout. Two of the 4 Redbirds that drew walks, scored runs. Brett Edlbeck added 2 innings of 4-hit ball.
With Cody Bezio fanning 12 Wolves over 8 innings, the Redbirds had no trouble stretching their unbeaten string to 11 games with an 8-0 win Sunday. Bezio walked 4 and fanned 4 before turning the game over to Todd Olsen for the 9th inning.
While Bezio shutdown the Crivitz offense, Marinette battered a pair of hurlers for 14 hits.
Leading the offensive attack were the top two hitters in the line-up as Jason Hofer (2 singles and triple) and Cully Falkenberg ( 2 singles and double). Aaron Woods (double) and Steve Oman added a pair of hits each while Ryan Johnson collected a triple.
We got another nice pitching performance as Cody fanned 12 over 8 innings. Our offense really got going against one of the better pitchers in the league, Baumann. He fell behind early in the count and our guys were able to take advantage, Redbird coach Nick Brukardt said.
Marinette snapped a scoreless game with 3 runs on 3 hits in the third inning. Johnson and Hofer opened the inning with three baggers, Falkenberg drilled a run scoring single and Francour a sac fly to left.
Falkenberg doubled with one out in the fifth and scored on a single off the bat of Francour.
In the sixth, Aaron Woods doubled, Cody Woods lashed a single before Dustin Kovar collected the RBI with a fly ball.
Owning a 5-0 cushion heading into the seventh, Bezio was beaned by reliever Garcia and later scored on a wild pitch.
Marinettes final two runs came in the 8th as Hofer singled, Falkenberg walked and Bezio ripped a two-run single.
Baumann worked 6 innings allowing 5 runs on 11 hits with 4 strikeouts and 6 walks.
Gillett Twice Sunday
In somewhat of a mild surprise, Menominee took a pair of games from host Gillett Sunday 9-2 and 7-3.
In the opener, Brett Edlbeck scattered 5 hits over 7 innings and finished with 3 walks and 3 strikeouts to earn the win.
Losing pitcher Luke Yogurst drove in two runs with a first inning double for a quick 2-0 Gillett lead.
Menominee would score the next 9 runs.
The Storm tied things up at 2-2 in the third on a double by Matt Lund and singles from Nate Hofer and Keifer Powers. In the fifth, Matt Jacobs singles and scored on a hit from Brian Bell for a 3-2 edge. Menominee added a run in the sixth and took control with a 5-run seventh.
Yogurst pitched 7 innings of 8 hit ball with 4 strikeouts, 4 walks and 5 earned runs allowed to get tagged with the loss.
JJ Grischow doubled while Mitch Champagne, Alex Ziesmer, Yogurst and Derek Ziesmer punched out singles.
Game two saw Edlbeck return to the mound and work 2 2/3 innings allowing 3 runs. Bell collected the mound win giving up one hit over 4 1/3 innings in relief.
Menominee trailed 3-1 after 3 innings before a pair of 3 run uprisings in the fifth and sixth proved beneficial. Edlbeck tied the score with a single in the fifth and later scored on a pair of fielding miscues.
In the sixth, run scoring hits by Hofer and Powers upped the margin to 7-3.
Alex Ziesmer gave up 3 earned runs over 5 innings before being relieved by Mason Mergener.
Ziesmer, Mergener and Yogurst collected 2 hits each for Gillett in the nightcap.
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