Laser Pros International poses with its medals after defeating Eagle River Blue 12-1 in the Northwoods Babe Ruth Senior League regular season championship game at Stafford Field Monday, July 8. Pictured in the front row, from left to right, are Logan Schmoeger, Ian Miller, Tim Fox, Isaac Bixby, Logan Cook and Kaden Chillemi. In the back row are coach Kevin Bixby, manager Craig Orth, Ben Sinclair, Devyn Orth, Jesse Mahner, coach Jim Kuczmarski, Jordan Kuczmarski, Riley Lepak, Caleb Gehrig and coach Tim Miller. (Photos by Bob Mainhardt for the River News)
Jordan Kuczmarski delivers a pitch during the Northwoods Babe Ruth Senior League regular season championship game between Laser Pros and Eagle River Blue at Stafford Field Monday, July 8. Kuczmarski struck out seven over three innings in Laser Pros’ 12-1 victory.
7/11/2019 7:30:00 AM Still perfect Laser Pros routs Eagle River Blue 12-1 for Senior League title
Laser Pros International still has a blemish-free record in 2019. The scary part for its Northwoods Babe Ruth Senior League foes is it seems the team is getting stronger as the season progresses.
The Rhinelander team put a bow on a perfect regular season Monday with its third win over second-place Eagle River Blue. This one was the most convincing of the three, a 12-1 rout in five innings in the Senior League regular season championship game at Stafford Field.
Laser Pros, the visiting team by virtue of a coin flip, scored twice in the top of the first inning and never looked back. They plated runs in every inning but the third to finish the game early via the 10-run rule.
Following an Isaac Bixby walk, back-to-back two-out singles by Ian Miller and Jesse Mahner started the scoring party for Laser Pros, giving the team a 2-0 lead in the opening frame. The team took advantage of Eagle River mistakes to add to the lead in a big way in the second.
Ben Sinclair reached on an error, stole second, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored when Eagle River botched a rundown play on Logan Cook's grounder to the left side of the infield. That allowed Cook to get to second. He took third on a wild pitch and scored on a passed ball. Devyn Orth hit a sacrifice fly to bring in Kaden Chillemi and Tim Fox singled, stole second and scored on a pair of wild pitches to give Laser Pros a 6-0 lead.
Chillemi and Fox got another rally going in the fourth, drawing back-to-back one-out walks. A hit parade followed as Bixby singled home Chillemi, Orth singled to bring around Fox and Miller hit a two-run single to score Bixby and Orth. Mahner singled later in the inning and came around when Jordan Kuczmarski reached on an error.
Laser Pros tacked on one more in the fifth as Schmoeger singled, stole second and scored on a pinch-hit single by Riley Lepak.
Kuczmarski was dominant in the three innings he could pitch as a 16-year-old under league pitching regulations. He started, struck out seven and allowed only one walk and one hit. Fox came on in the fourth and gave up the team's only run. Isaac Vedder drew a bases-loaded walk to force in Logan Hissom, who singled earlier in the inning. Orth faced the minimum in the fifth, picking Roen McGee off first base after allowing Eagle River's No. 10 hitter aboard with a two-out walk.
Laser Pros dominated the hit column to the tune of 10-2 in the contest. Miller went 2-for-3 with three RBIs while Mahner was 2-for-3 with an RBI. Fox, Bixby, Orth, Sinclair, Schmoeger and Lepak also collected hits in the game. Laser Pros got a run, hit and/or RBI out of every position by one in its 10-man batting order.
Laser Pros improved to 13-0 in the league. Eagle River Blue fell to 9-4 - with three of its four losses coming at the hands of Laser Pros, which edged the Eagles 3-1 when the teams first played in Rhinelander June 13. Laser Pros took the rematch 5-2 six days later in Eagle River.
In the Prep League regular season championship, Crandon moved to 15-0 on the season with a 16-5 win over Three Lakes.
The Northwoods Babe Ruth League tournament got underway yesterday with both of Rhinelander's Prep League teams facing each other at Stafford Field. The winner moves on to face top-seeded Crandon Monday night in Crandon.
In the Senior League, Laser Pros takes on eight-seeded Tomahawk Blue tonight in Tomahawk. Laser Pros won both regular season meetings against Tomahawk Blue via the 10-run rule. Rhinelander Green (7-5), the third seed in the bracket, travels to Eagle River Red (5-7), which dropped five straight games before receiving a forfeit win over Tomahawk Gold Monday. Eagle River Red won its only meeting against Rhinelander Green 6-1 June 4 in Eagle River.
Jeremy Mayo may be reached at email@example.com.
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