This story is sponsored by Dental Clinic of Marshfield
By Paul Lecker
MARSHFIELD – The Marshfield softball team played one of its better games of the season, but Wausau West’s Sammy Laatsch got in the way of a Tigers’ victory.
Laatsch scattered eight hits in a complete-game pitching effort, had a pair of hits and scored twice to lift West to a 3-1 win over Marshfield in a Wisconsin Valley Conference game Tuesday at Lee Field at the Marshfield Fairgrounds.
On the mound, Laatsch struck out eight, didn’t walk a batter and worked out of jams in four different innings stranding four Tigers in scoring position.
At the plate, she had a pair of singles and used instinctive base running to score twice.
With the game still scoreless in the third, Laatsch led off with a single and went to second on a groundout. She stole third base and scored when an errant throw went into leftfield.
West made it 2-0 in the fourth as Korey Boehm reached on an error, stole second and scored on a two-out single by Nikki Volm.
In the fifth, Laatsch again led off with a single, stole second, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on a groundout to give the Warriors (4-7, 2-2 Wisconsin Valley Conference) a 3-0 lead.
“They came out fighting and played hard and we made a game of it,” Marshfield coach Mike Voss said. “We put some pressure on them and they made the plays when they had to, where we those two mistakes (errors) and that cost us two runs.
“I thought we came up with some plays. Two weeks ago, I don’t know if we would have got out of some of those situations. They’re working at it and learning.”
After Marshfield stranded a runner on second in the second inning and one on third in the fourth, it finally came through with a run in the sixth.
Autumn Slowiak slapped a single, moved to second on a single by Miranda Baierl and scored on an infield single by Sara Sturomski.
Laatsch got out of the mess with a groundout, then stranded a runner on third in the seventh. Katie Treankler led off the inning with a triple but stayed at third as Laatsch earned her eighth strikeout and got a pair of groundball outs.
“We’re definitely starting to swing the bats better – (Laatsch) is one of the better pitchers in the conference,” Voss said. “We hit her pretty well. There were a few times when we struck out looking, but that happens.”
Freshman Caitlin Kozik gave up seven hits and walk, and struck out four in a solid effort for the Tigers (2-6, 1-3 Wisconsin Valley Conference).
“She kept them off balance,” Voss said of Kozik. “She did a good job, worked out of some tough jams and she’s been getting tougher and tougher as the year goes along. She’s matured a lot from where she came from in the beginning of the season.”
Marshfield plays at D.C. Everest on Thursday and hosts Hudson for a nonconference doubleheader on Saturday.
Warriors 3, Tigers 1
Wausau West 001 110 0 – 3 7 1
Marshfield 000 001 0 – 1 8 3
WP: Sammy Laatsch. LP: Caitlin Kozik.
SO: Laatsch 8; Kozik 4. BB: Laatsch 0; Kozik 1.
Top hitters: W, Laatsch 2×4, 2 SBs, 2 runs; Liz Meier 2B; Nikki Volm 2×3, RBI. M, Miranda Baierl 2×3; Sara Sturomski 2×3, RBI; Katie Treankler 2×3, 3B.
Records: Wausau West 4-7, 2-2 Wisconsin Valley Conference; Marshfield 2-6, 1-3 WVC.