Black Sox go 3-2 at Central Wisconsin Classic
Portage County Gazette
By John Kemmeter
The 10th-ranked Plover Black Sox American Legion Baseball team finished 3-2 at its home tournament Thursday through Sunday, July 12-15.
Plover (23-13, 8-5) knocked off fourth-ranked Fond du Lac on its way to a second place finish in Pool 1, before the Black Sox lost 17-9 to Sheboygan in the third-place game Sunday.
“Even though we went 3-2, I thought it was decent,” said Plover manager Wayne Sankey. “When you play five games in four days, against some good competition too, it’s a lot for the kids.
“But we’re looking forward to getting into the playoff season,” he said.
With high temperatures in the mid-80s to low-90s throughout the weekend, the Black Sox opened against Manitowoc Thursday night.
Plover trailed 2-1 going into the bottom of the fourth inning, when Logan Schulfer had a RBI double, and Austin Beyer and Michael Glodosky each followed with a RBI single to give the team a 5-2 lead, while Beyer came around to score on an error, Derek Baumgartner had a three-run double, and Jack Kelly had a RBI single to cap a nine-run rally in the inning that gave Plover a 10-2 lead on its way to a 10-3 win.
Baumgartner finished 2-for-3 with a double, two runs scored and three RBI; Kelly was 2-for-3 with two runs scored; Schulfer went 1-for-3 with a double and three RBI; and Beyer was 2-for-3. Kaden Roberts struck out four, walked six and allowed two earned runs on six hits over seven innings to earn a complete-game victory.
Plover followed against Watertown in a non-Pool Play game Friday night, where the Black Sox scored four runs in the bottom of the first inning and five in the third to jump out to a 9-1 lead, then added one run in the bottom of the fourth and a walk-off, pinch-hit single from Dylan Trigg with two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning to cap an 11-1 win in six innings.
Glodosky went 2-for-3, and Cam Stampfl, Baumgartner, Kelly and Tristan Aldrich each scored two runs to lead an offense that had eight different players record a RBI, while Beyer struck out six, walked none and didn’t allow an earned run on two hits over six innings to earn the victory on the mound.
“We played well,” said Sankey of the opening wins. “We hit well and we got good pitching from Roberts and from Beyer, and that was a huge thing.”
The Black Sox had back-to-back games scheduled for Saturday night, starting with a showdown against Madison Impact at 5:30 p.m.
Baumgartner came through with a RBI single, Aldrich had a RBI groundout and Beyer added a RBI single in the bottom of the first inning to give Plover a 3-0 lead, but Madison scored one run in the top of the second and rallied for nine runs in the top of the third to take a 10-3 lead.
The Black Sox used a RBI triple from Stampfl, a RBI single from Glodosky and a RBI double from Baumgartner in the bottom of the fourth inning to pull within 10-6, but Madison came back with four runs in the top of the fifth and one in the seventh to close the scoring on a 15-6 win.
Stampfl was 2-for-4 with a triple and two runs scored, Baumgartner went 2-for-4 with a double and two RBI, and Beyer was 2-for-3, while Schulfer took the loss after he allowed nine earned runs on nine hits, struck out two and walked two in two and 1/3 innings.
“They hit the ball well,” said Sankey. “We got behind early, and it was just hard to come back from.”
Plover played right after against fourth-ranked Fond du Lac, which scored two runs in the top of the first inning to take a 2-0 lead, before the Black Sox exploded for nine runs in the bottom of the first inning to go up 9-2.
Fond du Lac rallied for five runs in the top of the second inning and two in the third inning to tie the game at 9-9, but Plover answered with a RBI single from Aldrich and a sacrifice fly from Schulfer in the bottom of the third to take an 11-9 lead.
The Black Sox followed with five runs in the fourth inning and three runs in the bottom of the fifth to close out a 19-9 win in five innings, as Kelly scored the final run on a walk-off wild pitch.
Kelly finished 3-for-3 with a double, four runs scored and three RBI; Aldrich went 2-for-4 with two runs scored and three RBI; Baumgartner and Ehr both scored four runs; Glodosky scored three runs; and Schulfer, Beyer and King each had two RBI. Stampfl allowed seven earned runs on 10 hits, struck out five and walked three over three innings for the win, while Trigg walked three, struck out none and didn’t allow a hit or run over the final two innings for the save.
“We came back Saturday night and it was nice, we put up that big nine-spot in the first inning,” said Sankey. “Although give Fond du Lac credit, they hit the ball well too and they came back.
“But then once they tied it, we scored 10 unanswered, and I thought our guys just stayed patient and had good at bats,” he said.
The win left Plover in second place in Pool 1 behind Madison and sent it to play Sheboygan Sunday morning, where Sheboygan scored six runs in the top of the second inning and two in the third to build an 8-0 lead on the way to a 17-9 win.
Glodosky took the loss after he walked one and didn’t allow an earned run, as Sheboygan scored five unearned runs off him on five hits in one and 2/3 innings, while Barrett Brooks, King, Mitch Bignell and Kelly also saw time on the mound in the loss.
Brooks was 2-for-4 with two runs scored and two RBI, Trigg came off the bench to go 2-for-2 with a double and two runs scored, Davis came off to bench and went 2-for-2 with two runs scored, Baumgartner was 2-for-3 with two RBI, and King went 2-for-2.
Defending State Champion and ninth-ranked Eau Claire went on to beat Madison 10-1 in the Championship Game Sunday afternoon to win the Central Wisconsin Classic, while Plover is scheduled to compete in the AAA Region 2 Regional Tournament at Witter Field in Wisconsin Rapids Friday through Monday, July 20-23.
“We ran out of pitching, with having to use some relievers earlier in the tournament, earlier in the game than we wanted to,” said Sankey. “It’s just one of those things, and we’ve got another league game tomorrow (July 16 at Marshfield), and then we’ll have some time off before the playoffs.
“But playing at our home park is always nice, and getting guys an opportunity out there against good competition and just getting back in the swing of things,” he said of the Central Wisconsin Classic. “And playing a lot of games in a short amount of time is nice, because that’s what going to happen with the playoffs, too.”
2018 AAA Region 2 Regional Tournament at Witter Field in Wisconsin Rapids
Friday, July 20
Game 1: D.C. Everest vs. Plover, 1 p.m.
Game 2: Wausau vs. Marshfield, 4 p.m.
Game 3: Stevens Point vs. Wisconsin Rapids, 7 p.m.
Saturday, July 21
Game 4: Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 2, 1 p.m.
Game 5*: Winner Game 1 vs. Loser Game 3, 4 p.m.
Game 6: Winner Game 2 vs. Winner Game 3, 7 p.m.
Sunday, July 22
Game 7: Winner Game 4 vs. Loser Game 6, 1 p.m.
Game 8: Winner Game 5 vs. Winner Game 6, 4 p.m. (Winner Game 8 gets bye)
Game 9: Winner Game 7 vs. Loser Game 8, 7 p.m.
Monday, July 23
Game 10: Winner Game 8 vs. Winner Game 9, 4 p.m.
Game 11 (if Loser Game 10 suffered its first loss): Winner Game 10 vs. Loser Game 10, 7 p.m.
*If Loser Game 3 wins Game 5, schedule below will be used
Sunday, July 22
Game 7: Winner Game 4 vs. Winner Game 5, 1 p.m.
Game 8: Loser Game 5 vs. Loser Game 5, 4 p.m.
Game 9: Winner Game 6 vs. Winner Game 7, 7 p.m.
Monday, July 23
Game 10: TBA (The team with the 3-1 record has the bye into Championship Game), 4 p.m.
Game 11: Repeat Game 11 if necessary, 7 p.m.