PREP BASEBALL: Marshall dials up offense in doubleheader sweep of BEA

Photo by Sam Thiel Marshall’s Cody Greve follows through on a base hit during their doubleheader against Blue Earth Area on Tuesday. The Tigers defeated the Buccaneers 11-1 and 17-2.

MARSHALL – The Marshall baseball team hit the ball hard and often during their doubleheader against Blue Earth Area on Tuesday afternoon. The Tigers racked up 27 combined hits en route to a sweep over the Buccaneers, winning by scores of 11-1 and 17-2.

Marshall coach Chace Pollock was pleased with his team’s play on both sides of the field in both games.

“Offensively and defensively we played well. We ran into a team that was running out of arms; they’ve played a lot of games in a short amount of time, so I understand that,” Pollock said. “But give our guys credit, we hit the ball hard and we need to be ready to go today.”

The Tigers offense jumped right out of the starting gates, batting around the order to plate five quick runs. After Nick Klaith led off the inning with a single and advanced to second on a stolen base, Marshall struck out twice, and BEA looked as if it was going to escape with little damage done.

Then the bats came alive for the Tigers, as Jake Hess smacked an RBI double before Cody Greve connected on an RBI single to make it 2-0. After Alex Thompson and Kaleb Bossuyt drew back-to-back walks to load the bases, Nick Macchio coaxed another walk to bring in a run. Jackson Hughes then stepped up and lined a single that brought in two more runs, extending Marshall’s lead to 5-0 after one.

Marshall added to its advantage in the bottom of the second, getting a one-out single from Hess before Thompson made it 6-0 with an RBI single of his own. After the Buccaneers went down in the top of the third, the Tigers continued their hot offensive production, tacking on four more runs in the bottom half of the frame.

After Hughes led things off with a single, Marshall would get a one-out base hit from Kaleb Welvaert before Isaac Schmitt connected for an RBI single to make it 7-0. After a wild pitch pushed Marshall’s lead to 8-0, Hess found his third hit of the day to make it 9-0. Greve then followed that up with a hard-hit ball that landed for an RBI triple to bring it to 10-0.

Marshall would then shut BEA down in the next two innings to cap off the opening-game shutout in five innings.

Hess led the way for Marshall, going 3 for 3 in Game 1 with two RBI while Greve and Hughes each added a pair of hits and two RBI.

Welvaert earned the win on the hill, going three innings while allowing no runs on one hit and striking out three.

The Tigers kept the momentum going in the nightcap, scoring four quick runs in the top of the first. After Klaith got things started with a leadoff walk, Welvaert smacked a double to put runners in scoring position with nobody out. Schmitt then drew a walk to load the bases before Thompson smashed a bases-clearing triple to make it 3-0. Bossuyt followed that up with an RBI double to push the Tigers lead to 4-0.

BEA would get on the board in the bottom of the second, reaching on an error before eventually coming around to score on a double steal to cut the deficit to 4-1.

Marshall answered right back in the next inning, getting a one-out single from Hess before Greve connected for his second RBI triple of the afternoon to make it 5-1. Thompson then reached on an error to bring in Greve to push the lead to 6-1.

The Tigers continued to add to their advantage in the next frame, as Macchio led off with a single before Hughes reached on a bunt single to put runners on the corners with nobody out. Marshall would make it 7-1 when Hughes would get caught in a rundown but reached first base safely, allowing Macchio to score in the process.

The Buccaneers would cut into the deficit in the bottom half of the fourth, using a leadoff single to their advantage before coming around to score on a wild pitch to make it 7-2.

Marshall quickly responded in the top of the fifth, getting a single from Hess and a double from Greve before Thompson brought both runners in on a single to extend it to 9-2. Bossuyt and Macchio would then draw back-to-back walks to load the bases before Hughes connected on an RBI single to make it 10-2. Klaith and Welvaert pushed it to 12-2 with two more walks with no one out before the Tigers added three more runs on a pair of wild pitches and a Greve RBI single to make it 15-2.

An Andrew Mulso single kept the inning going before a sacrifice fly gave Marshall 10 runs in the frame and a 17-2 lead. The Tigers then shut down BEA the rest of the way to earn the doubleheader sweep.

Thompson led the way for the Tigers in Game 2, going 3 for 3 with six RBI while Greve added two hits and two RBI. Hess, Welvaert also had a couple of hits while Hughes went 3 for 3 with an RBI to add to the Marshall effort.

Klaith earned the victory in Game 2, going four innings while allowing two runs on five hits while striking out four.

Pollock said both Welvaert and Klaith did a solid job with their outings, especially attacking the strike zone and keeping their pitch counts low.

“Kaleb (Welvaert) and Nick (Klaith) both did a nice job. Kaleb did a good job of attacking the strike zone and had all of his pitches working for him,” Pollock said. “We were able to keep his pitch count low before turning it over to Jackson who did a nice job in his first outing of the year. Jackson attacked the strike zone and had a little bit of everything working for him. In the second game, Klaith got into a rhythm, especially those last two innings, and let his defense work.”

Marshall (10-3) will host its final home game of the regular season against Mankato East for Senior Night today at 5 p.m. Pollock said it’s a big game for them and they need to come in ready to go as the playoff picture starts to take form.

“We’re back here today for our last home game of the year; hopefully we can host a playoff game so we can get one more at home but for the time being it’s our last and it’s Senior Night,” Pollock said. “We need to come out focused because it’s a huge game for us.”

Marshall 10, BEA 0 (5 innings)

Blue Earth 000 00 — 0 2 1

Marshall 514 0x — 10 12 0

HITTING: Marshall (Klaith 1-3, run; Welvaert 1-3, run; Schmitt 1-3, RBI, run; Hess 3-3, 2B, 2 RBI, 3 runs; Greve 2-2, 3B, 2 RBI, run; Thompson 1-1, RBI, run; Macchio 1-2 RBI; Hughes 2-3, 2 RBI, run).

PITCHING: Marshall (Welvaert 3.0-1-0-0-0-3; Hughes 2.0-0-0-0-2-2).

Marshall 17, BEA 2 (5 innings)

Marshall 402 1(10) — 17 15 0

Blue Earth 010 10 — 2 5 1

HITTING: Marshall (Welvaert 2-3, 2B, RBI, 2 runs; Hess 2-3, 2 runs; Greve 2-4, 3B, 2 RBI, 3 runs; Thompson 3-3, 3B, 6 RBI, 2 runs; Mulso 1-1, RBI; Bossuyt 1-2, 2B, 2 RBI, run; Macchio 1-2, 2B, 2 runs; Hughes 3-3, RBI, run).

PITCHING: Marshall (Klaith 4.0-5-2-1-3-4; Jones 1.0-0-0-0-1-1).