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Hot at the right time

Marshall black turns four hits into five runs in win over Tracy

Photo by Jake McNeill Marshall second baseman Eli Weedman fields a ground ball during the second inning of a baseball game against Tracy Senior Legion at American Legion Field in Marshall on Monday. Marshall Junior Legion Black picked up a 5-0 win in the game.

MARSHALL — A second-inning rally from the hosting Marshall Junior Legion Black baseball team provided all the offense necessary to seal a win on a 90-degree Monday afternoon. Marshall scored four early runs in their Monday game against Tracy and carried that momentum to a 5-0 victory.

The game comes after Marshall’s originally scheduled Wood Bat Tournament over the weekend was canceled due to heavy rainfall. Marshall manager Chace Pollock said he still expected the field to be ready today after seeing how Legion Field has consistently been able to drain in the past and added that he was happy to be able to get the team back out on the field again.

The Tigers kept Tracy off the board behind another strong pitching outing from Chase Alcorn. He tossed 6 1/3 innings for Marshall, holding Tracy to one hit while striking out six batters in the day. 

“He threw a lot of strikes and had some good pace on the ball today, which helped,” Pollock said of Alcorn. “He was mixing every pitch in for a strike and he had his best stuff working today.”

In relief, Eli Weedman retired each of the two batters he faced while striking out one of them.

JR Vierstraete kicked off Marshall’s second-inning rally with a leadoff single and Shep Jensen walked to put two runners on base. After a Leyton Wherry sacrifice bunt advanced them both into scoring position, a Carson Kopitski ground out drove in Vierstraete for the go-ahead run.

Still, Marshall wasn’t done scoring. Tyson Louwagie walked to put runners on the corners with no outs and a Tracy error on a Logan Phillippe grounder turned what could have been an inning-ending out into another Marshall run. Alcorn and Weedman then hit consecutive RBI singles to make Tracy pay for the error, giving Marshall a 4-0 lead.

Overall Trevor Smith put together a solid day on the mound for Tracy. He held Marshall to two earned runs over the full six frames, striking out four batters with four hits and five walks allowed.

“I thought the kid on the mound for them was a good pitcher. He was throwing strikes and that one inning we just put it all together and hit the ball hard,” Pollock said. “I thought we had good at-bats the whole night. They played decently well behind him, made some plays. There was only one error on the scoreboard by the end of the night, so it was a good quality baseball game and for us to see an arm like that is going to make us better.”

Tracy manager James Fultz said his team’s defensive success largely came down to Smith’s ability to get ahead in the count, adding that Marshall was able to get ahead in the count during each of the first three at-bats of the second inning and turned that into offensive production.

“When you’re throwing fastballs to Marshall when you’re down in the count, it’s going to be really tough,” Fultz said. “I thought Trev pitched well though. They’re a good team. It’s tough it ended up being 4-0, I think we could have gotten out of that inning. There was an error, we could have left it at one run so maybe it would have been a 2-0 game, but can’t complain too much.”

Marshall scratched one last run across the plate in the sixth inning when Jensen singled, stole second and went on to score on a passed ball.

Alcorn, Vierstraete, Weedman and Jensen each accounted for one of Marshall’s four hits on the day while Tyson Louwagie drew a pair of walks. Jensen also stole a pair of bases and scored a pair of runs on the day. David Schuh accounted for the lone Tracy hit, a single.

Fultz said he thought his team put together quality at-bats against a Marshall team he described as typically having quality pitching with a little more velocity than they’re used to.

“After that first time through, I thought our bats were pretty good, we just couldn’t string consecutive ones together,” Fultz said. “Even when [Alcorn] was walking guys, they turned double plays… there was an inning that we maybe had a chance and they threw a guy out, but that happens sometimes. I’ll take the at-bats. It’s unfortunate we didn’t score but we’ll take it at this point.”

Marshall improves to 8-2 and will host Sleepy Eye today at the Irish Yard in Milroy at 7 p.m. Tracy will look to secure its first win of the season when it plays Thursday in Milroy.

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