Rhinelander’s Kolby Ridderbusch rounds first and heads for second after hitting a double during the third inning of a Wisconsin Little League District 5, 12U tournament game against Wausau American at Doepke Park in Wausau Tuesday, July 11. (Jeremy Mayo/River News)
Truman Lamers delivers a pitch during a Wisconsin Little League District 5, 10U tournament game between Rhinelander and Northwoods at Hodag Park Tuesday, July 11. (Bob Mainhardt for the River News)
7/13/2017 7:33:00 AM Wausau National downs Hodags 12Us in district play
WAUSAU - The Rhinelander Little League 12U All-Star team felt pretty good after scoring three runs in the top of the first inning Tuesday in a game to advance to the Wisconsin District 5 championship.
Then Wausau National came to bat.
The Nats jacked three home runs in the first, pounded out four dingers in all, and routed the Hodags 16-6 in four innings at Doepke Park. Wausau National advanced to Thursday's championship round of the double-elimination tournament while Rhinelander was relegated to an elimination game on Wednesday for the other spot in the championship, which concluded after deadline.
Mason Davis crushed a three-run shot to center to give the Hodags the lead in the first before Wausau capitalized on a number of Rhinelander miscues. The Hodags committed five errors alone in the first inning, and Wausau National took advantage of every one of them. Taylor Lemanski hit a grand slam to give the Nats a 5-3 lead, but they were far from done. An error extended the inning back to the top of the order for Keagen Jirschele, who took Hodag starter Sam Schneider deep for a three-run shot. Two more errors, a single and an Eli Gustafson two-run homer gave Wausau a 12-3 lead after the first.
Rhinelander got three runs back in the second on an RBI double by AJ Turek and an error off Schneider's bat that allowed two more runs to score, but that was all the offense the Hodags could muster in the contest. Wausau National, meanwhile, got a two-run single from Jesse Osness in the second and a solo homer from Brandt Rice in the third. The winning run scored in the fourth as Wausau - up nine runs - had Jirschele steal second and third after a leadoff error before Osness plated the game-clinching run with a single to right.
Schneider pitched 2 2/3 innings and only five of the runs he allowed were earned. He struck out four batters and walked one. Max Ratty allowed an unearned run on a hit over a third of an inning.
Kolby Ridderbusch doubled in the third, the last of Rhinelander's three hits in the contest. The Hodags were patient at the plate however, drawing seven walks in total - including six off Wausau starter Blake Nichols.
10Us fall at home
Rhinelander's 10U All-Star team did not fare much better in its district tournament opener, falling to Northwoods 7-1 Tuesday night at Hodag Park.
The Hodags scored a run in the bottom of the first to tie the game, but it was all Northwoods from there as the Eagles scored two in the second, one in the third and three in the fourth to blow the game open.
Truman Lamers scored Rhinelander's lone run in the contest, reaching on a leadoff walk in the first and stealing a base before coming around on Owen Mansavage's groundout. The Hodags didn't record a hit until a two-out single by Brody Kowieski in the fourth inning. Lamers added a one-out hit in the sixth.
Kowieski started and went 2 2/3 innings on the mound for Rhinelander before reaching the 75-pitch limit. He allowed four runs on two hits with six walks and four strikeouts. Lamers went the rest of the way, allowing three runs on four hits with a strikeout.
Rhinelander will face Wausau American in an elimination game at 5 p.m. next Monday at Doepke Park.
Jeremy Mayo may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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