Mudcats go 1-3 in Wooden Bat Classic

MARSHALL – By David Merrill

sports at marshallindependent.com

MARSHALL/MILROY- The Marshall Mudcats went 1-3 in the 2014 U.S. Bank Classic.

Their lone win came against Cold Spring on Saturday.

Cold Spring earned a 9-1 victory over the Mudcats on Sunday.

Cold Spring 9

Marshall 1

Cold Spring Manager Aaron Schneider wears a blue band around his wrist that says “Think Hitting”.

His team seemed to be perfectly in tune with that montra en route to a 9-1, five-inning victory against Marshall Sunday.

They got a strong pitching performance as well.

Alex Budde, who normally plays centerfield, provided nine strikeouts while allowing just one run on two hits, both by Dylan-Criquet Danielson.

Cold Spring also took advantage of three Marshall errors.

They committed two themselves as the Mudcats scored on an overthrow to second base trying to catch Thomas Fischer stealing.

It allowed Criquet Danielson to score from third.

Marshall 4

Cold Spring 2

Marshall earned its first victory of the weekend with a 4-2 victory over Cold Spring Saturday.

The Mudcats got a complete game performance on the mound from Connor Winkleman, who struck out three while walking two and allowed just two hits.

Marshall also got a lift from Dylan Criquet-Danielson, who had an RBI and scored a run on a passed ball.

Mudcats manager Mitch Maxwell credited Criquet-Danielson’s adjustments at the plate with those RBI.

“He was struggling a little bit early in the season getting his front foot down,” Maxwell said. “He’s a great hitter; he’s got great hands, but he was late on everything. We talked about that and he did a great job of converting what he did in the cage to the plate today.”

Nate Hoeft also had a big day offensively with two RBI. He had one in the sixth along with one from Criquet Danielson to put the Mudcats up 4-2.

Cold Spring got on the board in the third with an RBI double from Mason Grete and tied the game in the fourth via an error that helped Victor Schleppenbach reach base and scored Calvin Kalthoff.

The Mudcats also got hits from Connor Winkleman and Aaron Polejewski.

The game ended with Cold Spring runners on second and third.

Cold Spring coach Aaron Schneider knew his team missed some opportunities.

“They hit the ball with guys on base and we left a few guys out there unfortunately,” Schneider said. “We had a great start out of our starting pitcher and we didn’t have any errors. I’m proud of the way we played.”

Mitchell, S.D. 6

Marshall 5

MARSHALL- After falling behind 6-0 after two innings, starting pitcher Adam Kovash settled in and the Mudcats almost pulled off a comeback victory, falling short at 6-5.

“Adam,when he gets in control, will throw all three pitches for strikes,” Mudcats manager Mitch Maxwell said. “He’ll throw his fastball and his changeup is his second best pitch and he can mix his curveball in. After the second inning, he had command of all three pitches.”

The loss came following a 16-2 drubbing at the hands of Waconia to start the tournament.

After the loss, Maxwell wanted them to focus on themselves and what they knew they could do.

He felt that did a better job of that against Mitchell.

“I thought today was a battle against ourselves to see if we can do what we’re capable of doing. I think there was a little bit of hangover in the beginning, but after that we settled down and got in a rhythm and took control of ourselves.”

Derek Rasmussen finished the game with two RBI to go with one from Nate Hoeft and one from Mason Campion.

Hoeft and Rasmussen each had doubles in the contest.

Kovash pitched all seven innings and finished with four strikeouts against five walks and gave up five hits.

Trailing 6-3 going into the seventh inning, Dylan Criquet Danielson led off the inning with a single before Walker Werpy drew a walk and Scott Buss singled to load the bases.

Hoeft then hit into a fielder’s choice to score a run and Rasmussen recorded his second RBI to get the Mudcats within one before a strikeout stranded Marshall runners on first and second.

Mitchell coach Luke Norden knew his team was fortunate to escape with a victory.

“You don’t win a baseball game in two innings,” Norden said. “Yesterday, we swung the bat well all game and today we end up striking out five times in the last three innings. You act like the game is over, your production is going to go down and they are going to sneak back in.”

Aluminum still king

While the players enjoyed the switchup from aluminum, they won’t be in favor of switching to wood anytime soon.

“It’s fun playing with the wood bats, but you just get more pop off the metal bats,” Marshall catcher Walker Werpy said. “Overall, you can hit the ball farther and harder. It’s fun to switch to a wood bat for a weekend though for something different.”

Dylan Criquet-Danielson, who had a productive tournament with the new hardware, agreed with his teammate.

“I, personally, like the wooden bats, Criquet Danielson said. “They have more pop and its a bigger barrel. You get more hits with a metal bat.”

Criquet’s bat

chirps loudest

Criquet-Danielson was one of the bright spots for the Mudcats throughout the tournament, breaking some bad habits at the plate.

“I was late on a lot of the pitches before,” Criquet-Danielson said. ” I just tried to relax up there and see fastballs and get hits.”

Getting hits is what he did.

Criquet-Danielson batted a combined 6-for-10 and finished with three RBI for the tournament.

Looking ahead

Marshall is scheduled to travel to Hutchinson tomorrow before taking on Valley Springs in a doubleheader on Wednesday.

Box Scores:

Waconia 16, Marshall 2

Hitting: Waconia (Grove 3-for-4, two RBI , four runs; Whittaker 3-for-4, doubles, four RBI; Stevenson 3-for-4, three doubles, seven RBI; Tucker 2-for-3, double, three runs; Schiffman 1-for-4, run; Hukriede 4-for-4, two RBI, three runs; Hayden Meyer 0-for-4, run) Marshall (N. Winkleman 1-for-3, double, RBI; Fischer 0-for-2, RBI; C. Winkleman 1-for-2; Criquet Danielson 0-for-2, run; Buss 0-for-2, run)

Pitching: Waconia (Bullis 5-2-2-2-4-2) Marshall (Hoeft 2-7-7-7-1-0; Campion 2-9-11-11-4-0; Buss 1-1-3-3-0-0).

Mitchell (S.D.) 6, Marshall 5

Hitting: Mitchell (Pierson 1-for-3, RBI, run; Sadler 1-for-3, two RBI, run; Neugebauer 1-for-3, run; Larson 0-for-0, two runs). Marshall (Hoeft 3-for-4, double, RBI, run; Rasmussen 2-for-4, double, two RBI; Campion 1-for-3, RBI, run; Criquet-Danielson 2-for-3, run; Buss 1-for-2, two runs).

Pitching: Mitchell (Schmidt 7-11-5-5-4-3) Marshall (Kovash 7-5-6-6-5-2).

Marshall 4, Cold Spring 2

Marshall 020 011 0- 4 8 2

Cold Spring 001 100 x- 2 4 4

Hitting: Marshall (Hoeft 2-for-4, two RBI; Criquet-Danielson 2-for-3, double, RBI, run; C. Winkleman 1-for-3, run; N. Winkleman 1-for-3; Polejewski 2-for-3, run) Cold Spring (Neu 0-for-2, RBI; Schleppenbach 0-for-2, RBI; Kalthoff 1-for-3, run; Lardy 0-for-3, run).

Pitching: Marshall (C. Winkleman 7-4-2-2-3-2) Cold Spring (Kalthoff 6-8-4-4-3-4).

Cold Spring 9, Marshall 1

Cold Spring 0700 02- 9 7 2

Marshall 000 10- 1 2 3

Hitting: Cold Spring (Solder 1-for-2, two RBI, run; Neu 1-for-3, RBI, run; Ahrens 0-for-1, RBI; Kalthoff 1-for-1 , RBI, run; Prozinski 1-for-3, RBI, run; Brinker 2-for-3, two runs; Hemingsson 0-for-2, run) Marshall (Criquet-Danielson 2-for-2, run)

Pitching: Cold Spring (Budde 5-2-1-0-2-9) Marshall (Polejewski 2-4-7-6-4-1; Hoeft 2-1-2-2-0-1; Werpy 1-2-2-1-0-0).