Marshall A’s go 2-1 at Nick Bell Classic

Bouncing back from a loss in their opening game of the three-day Nick Bell Classic, the Marshall A’s got a strong pitching performance Saturday and a big day at the plate Sunday to wrap up their time in Cold Spring with a 2-1 record.

A five-run fourth inning by Cold Spring doomed Marshall Friday in its opener, a 6-1 loss. Zach Olson scored the A’s lone run on a home run as Marshall was held to just four hits by former Southwest Minnesota State University pitcher Ryan Morse.

Marshall’s bats remained dormant Saturday, but Travis McGlauflin stepped up with a strong effort on the mound in a 1-0 win over Sauk Rapids. McGlauflin, a current SMSU pitcher, held Sauk Rapids to four hits in seven innings, striking out four batters and walking two.

“He kind of works himself into big counts sometimes, but he just let his defense play Saturday,” A’s manager Sean Culhane said of McGlauflin. “It was a good pitching effort on his part, and really, we got good pitching performances all weekend. One bad play ended up blowing up the ballgame against Cold Spring (Friday), but Nate Dickhausen pitched well for us in that one, too.”

Marshall’s lone run in the win over Sauk Rapids came in the first inning. Ben Korger reached on an error by the shortstop and stole second. He was then moved over to third by Olson and scored on a fielder’s choice. The A’s had just two hits in the game.

The bats finally woke up for the A’s Sunday, as they tagged 14 hits against Brainerd in a 10-3 win. Five players had two or more hits for Marshall. Mason Schnaible led the way, going 3-for-3 with a double and two RBIs.

Olson again came through for Marshall, going 2-for-4 with two doubles, two RBIs and a run scored. Cody Curry and Ben Sanders were each 2-for-4 with a run, and Tanner Neale was 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI.

With such high-level competition at the classic, Culhane said it’s tough to see a team have a good day at the plate.

“That’s the thing about the Nick Bell Classic is you’re going to see good teams up there and the pitching is good, so you usually have to play small ball and aren’t going to score a whole lot of runs,” he said. “But our bats woke up (Sunday) and we really got some timely hits.”

Dylan Shoemaker got the start and the win for Marshall, working six innings. Andrew Kinney closed out the game by throwing a scoreless seventh.

Marshall (18-6 overall) closes out its regular season on Friday with a 7:30 p.m. home game against Castlewood (S.D.).