By Paul Lecker
For Wausau Pilot & Review
WAUSAU – The Wausau Legion baseball team seemed to have all the momentum heading into the second game of the championship round of the Class AAA American Legion Baseball Regional on Saturday at Athletic Park.
Needing to beat Marshfield twice to earn a spot in the state tournament, Wausau rolled to a 19-0 victory in the opening game.
However, the Bulldogs’ momentum was short-loived.
Riley Bauman smacked a three-run homer in the first inning and Logan Homolka allowed just two runs in five innings as Marshfield reversed its fortunes and cruised to a 12-2 win the second championship game to earn a spot in the 2022 Wisconsin American Legion Baseball State Tournament in Sheboygan.
Marshfield will be making its first state appearance since hosting the event in 2016. Marshfield (22-13) will take on Eau Claire (19-13) in its opener on Tuesday at 1:45 p.m. at Wildwood Park.
Following Bauman’s three-run shot to left field in the first, Wausau scored twice in the second. Cole Osness led off with a walk and Isaiah Piscitello had a single. Osness scored on a wild pitch and Piscitello came home on an error to bring the Bulldogs to within one at 3-2.
Homolka coaxed a fly out and groundout with the bases loaded to escape further damage, and allowed just two baserunners over the final three innings.
Marshfield retaliated with four more in the second, keyed by a two-out two-run single by Ben Dietsche, to take control.
Marshfield finished off the win in the fifth inning, scoring five times. Kale Weisenberger and Bennett Lang had RBI singles and Brock Bennington smacked one off the wall in left-center to plate another to push Marshfield’s lead to 10-2. After a strikeout, Bauman walked to load the bases, Nick Urban walked to force in one run and Dietsche was hit by a pitch to force in another, ending the game due to the 10-run rule.
Bauman finished with four RBI, Dietsche with three, and four different Blue Devils scored twice in the victory.
In the opening game, Wausau jumped on Marshfield starter Brady Schmidt, scoring six times in the first inning.
The Bulldogs (25-18) took advantage of two errors, had RBI singles from Bryce Heil and Piscitello, and two bases loaded walks to take a big lead.
Wausau essentially put the game to rest in the second inning, plating nine more runs on six hits. Piscitello walked with the bases loaded, Wes Schneider had a sacrifice fly, Jacob Hamann had a two-run single, Heil drove in another with a double, Cole Osness followed with a two-RBI double and Noah Stroming had an RBI single to push the Bulldogs’ lead to 15-0.
Lane Juedes added an RBI single and Heil had a sac fly in the third, and Wausau scored two more in the fifth.
Piscitello allowed just three hits, while striking out six to earn the win for Wausau in a five-inning complete game.
Osness ended up 4-for-4 with two RBI, Heil had three hits and three RBI, and Hamann finished with three RBI in the win.
Wausau 19, Marshfield 0
Wausau 692 02 – 19 14 0
Marshfield 000 00 – 0 3 3
WP: Isaiah Piscitello. LP: Brady Schmidt.
SO: Piscitello 6; Schmidt (1 inn.) 0, Chase Robinson (2/3 inn.) 0, Sloan Welch (2 1/3 inn.) 2, Isaac Zeps (1 inn.) 1. BB: Piscitello 2; Schmidt 3, Robinson 3, Welch 2, Zeps 1.
Top hitters: W, Ethan Graham 2 RBI; Lane Juedes 2×4, 2 runs, RBI; Bryce Heil 3×3, 2B, 3 runs, 3 RBI; Cole Osness 4×4, 2 2Bs, 3 runs, 2 RBI; Noah Stroming 1×3, 2 runs, 2 RBI; Piscitello 1×4, 2 runs, 2 RBI; Wes Schneider 1×2, 2 runs, RBI; Jacob Hamann 2×2, 2 runs, 3 RBI. M, Bennett Lang 1×2; Carsten Jirschele 1×1; Logan Homolka 1×1.
Marshfield 12, Wausau 2
Wausau 020 00 – 2 3 2
Marshfield 340 05 – 12 8 2
WP: Homolka. LP: Heil.
SO: Heil (0 inn.) 0, Cole Osness (4 1/3 inn.) 3, Wyatt Stahel (1/3 inn.) 1; Homolka 2. BB: Heil 1, C. Osness 3, Stahel 2; Homolka 2.
Top hitters: W, Heil 2×3. M, Brock Bennington 2 runs; Cole TImmler 2 runs; Riley Bauman HR, 2 runs, 4 RBI; Nick Urban RBI; Ben Dietsche 1×3, 3 RBI; Kale Weisenberger 2×3, 2 runs, RBI; Lang 1×3, RBI.
Records: Wausau 25-18; Marshfield 22-13.
2022 Class AAA Regional 2 American Legion Baseball Tournament
July 20-23, at Athletic Park, Wausau
Wednesday, July 20
Game 1: Marshfield (19-12) 4, Wisconsin Rapids (14-8) 3
Game 2: Plover (27-11) 2, Stevens Point (12-17) 0
Game 3: Wausau (22-16) 6, D.C. Everest 0
Thursday, July 21
Game 4: Wisconsin Rapids (15-8) 11, Stevens Point (12-18) 0
Game 5: Marshfield (20-12) 11, D.C. Everest 1
Game 6: Plover (28-11) 6, Wausau (22-17) 5
Friday, July 22
Game 7: Wausau (23-17) 8, Wisconsin Rapids (15-9) 0
Game 8: Marshfield (21-12) 7, Plover (28-12) 4
Game 9: Wausau (24-17) 17, Plover (28-13) 13
Saturday, July 23
Game 10: Wausau (25-17) 19, Marshfield (21-13) 0
Game 11: Marshfield (22-13) 12, Wausau (25-18) 2