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Menomonie 2, Ellsworth 1 Ellsworth fell in a pitchers' duel in the first game of the Bloomer tournament Saturday. The Panthers outhit Menomonie by one, but it was the lack of clutch hits that hurt Ellsworth. "It was a pretty good game, but we had some opportunities where we didn't come up with timely hits," Ellsworth coach Ryan Casper said. Halle Hatch took the loss for the Panthers. The junior went four innings, gave up six hits and allowed two earned runs.
With the bases loaded and one out and the Panthers up by one in the top of the seventh, Bloomer hit a comebacker to Isaac Hines. The freshman threw home to get the second out of the inning, but the throw from the catcher to first base hit the runner causing the ball to bounce into the outfield. Bloomer scored four runs in the rain-drenched seventh, and Ellsworth failed to score in the bottom of the inning. The Panthers threatened in bottom half of the inning.
When Prescott starter Mike Lytle faltered in the first inning, Billy Brookshaw was summoned to pitch and he turned in a solid performance to help the Cardinals win on the road. Brookshaw, a junior, pitched the final 6 1/3 innings Thursday and held the Panthers to three runs (two earned) on six hits. He helped himself by going 2-for-5 with a double and four runs. Ellsworth starter Brady Schroeder also struggled, getting tagged for seven runs (five earned) in 4 1/3 innings. Reliever Travis Kroll pitched the next 1 2/3 innings, giving up an earned run and suffering the loss.
Doubles partners Nick Rhiel and Andy Roland picked up Ellsworth's lone win Thursday on the road. "They did a good job or working together and coming to the net," Ellsworth coach Casey Keller said of the No. 3 doubles team. Though the Panthers suffered a lopsided loss, Keller was happy with what he saw. "We showed as a team that we are improving," he said. Ellsworth will play in the subsectionals Monday in Eau Claire.
Ellsworth roared off to a strong start by scoring four first-inning runs against Baldwin-Woodville's Brooke McNamara, but a switch to Abby Klopp in the second inning proved too tough of a task to take. The hard-throwing Klopp struck out 14 Ellsworth hitters in her five innings pitched. "We just have to do a better job swinging the bats," Ellsworth coach Ryan Casper said. "We just have to adjust, we were over-swinging on a hard pitcher and you just can't do that." Halle Hatch suffered the loss for the Panthers. She gave up four hits, and only three earned runs.
The Panthers came in seventh at the Middle Border Conference tournament Tuesday by firing a 393 at the New Richmond Golf Club. By placing three strokes in front of Prescott, Ellsworth also finished the season seventh in the eight-team conference standings. Joe Henning led the Panthers with a 90. Chrystian Kulow (99) also cracked 100. Tyler Samuel (100) and Austin Manore (104) also contributed to the Panthers' team score. Osceola won the tournament with a 330. The Chieftains placed first at every conference meet this season and finished with a perfect 80 points.
Ellsworth scored a 196 in the Middle Border Conference meet at Prescott Monday afternoon. The team finished in seventh place out of eight teams at Clifton Highland Golf Club. Joe Henning and Chrystian Kulow led the way for Ellsworth as they both shot a 46 in the nine-hole meet. Jared Hines and Tyler Samuel both shot a 52, and Austin Manore was the other competitor, carding a 56.
Prescott scored seven unearned runs Monday courtesy of four Ellsworth errors and won on the road. One of the more costly errors came with two outs and two on in the second inning. The Cardinals hit a dribbler to the first baseman and the ball was booted. Ellsworth led 3-0 at the time, but Prescott went on to score three runs that inning. "We were two feet from the bag for the third out," Ellsworth coach Ryan Casper said. Halle Hatch pitched all seven innings for Ellsworth and suffered the loss.
The Panthers forced the issue on the base paths by executing the hit and run as they won Monday in Hager City. "We were more the aggressor today and that was the key," Ellsworth coach Steve Block said. Brady Schroeder led the Panthers at the plate: He went 3-for-4 with a double, three RBI and three runs. "For the last six games he's been really locked in," Block said. James Georgakas earned the complete-game win. He struck out 10 and walked one.
After taking a two-run lead after one inning on the road, the Panthers scored on a suicide squeeze in the second to go up by three. That run proved to be big. Baldwin-Woodville would rally, but it fell one run short Tuesday. Ellsworth had just three hits and tallied six errors while Baldwin-Woodville had four hits and five errors. "We didn't hit all that bad, we just didn't do anything special," Ellsworth coach Steve Block said. James Georgakas was the player of the game, according to Block.