Rhinelander next faces Merrill in must-win game
STAR JOURNAL REPORT
One bad inning turned out to be the difference Wednesday night when the Rhinelander Rebels Legion baseball team gave up five runs in the bottom of the fifth and lost its opening AA Regional Tournament game at Stafford Field to Shawano, 10-7.
Rebels starting pitcher Bryce Schickert worked four-plus innings when he gave up five earned runs on two hits with seven walks and a hit batter while striking out four. Reliever Brandon Hess worked 1 2/3 innings and was charged with the loss, allowing another five earned runs on four hits with four walks and hit batter while striking out one.
Dylan Sumnicht pitched all seven innings for Shawano and recorded the victory, allowing four earned runs out of the seven scored on 10 hits with a walk and seven strikeouts.
The game was error-prone with Shawano committing six errors and Rhinelander having three fielding miscues.
Shawano scored first in the bottom of the first with an RBI single by Jacob Lacy.
The Rebels tied the game at 1-1 in the top of the second with Josh Randolph tallying an RBI single to score Kurt Zuiker.
Rhinelander then pulled in front with three runs in the top of third when the Rebels put together four consecutive hits to lead off the inning with a single by Easton Senoraske, a double by Jacob DeMeyer, a 2-RBI single by Brad Comer and an RBI single by Brad Quade.
Shawano got back two runs in the bottom of the third when Schickert gave up three walks to load the bases and Noah Brodhagen was hit by a pitch to bring in a run followed by a flyout to center field by Kasey Kristof to score another.
The Rebels scored a run in the top of the fifth to give them a 5-3 lead when DeMeyer reached base on an error, stole second base, advanced to third on a single by Quade and reached home on a single by Zuiker.
Shawano sent 11 batters to the plate in the fifth inning when Schickert walked the first two batters and then was relieved by Hess, who gave up a single to Brodhagen to load the bases. Casey Baumann singled to drive in a run before an error scored another, Isaac Buntrock tallied a 2-RBI double and Sumnicht doubled to bring home Buntrock.
The Rebels were able to cut their deficit to a single run by scoring twice in the sixth inning when Tait Spencer singled and reached home on a double by Senoraske, who then advanced to third on a groundout and crossed the plate on a passed ball.
Shawano got those two runs back by loading the bases in the bottom of the sixth when Sumnicht walked to bring home a runner and Brett Ainsworth, who was the first batter Senoraske faced in relief of Hess, also walked to score another.
Following the opening loss in the six-team, double-elimination tournament, the Rebels next face a must-win game against Merrill, which won its tournament opener over Northwoods.
The game between Rhinelander and Merrill is scheduled for Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at Stafford Field, where the tournament is slated to run through Saturday with the regional winner advancing to this year’s AA State Tournament set to begin July 26 at Athletic Park in Merrill.
Shawano 10, Rhinelander 7
Rhinelander 0-1-3 0-1-2 0 – 7 10 3
Shawano 1-0-2 0-5-2 X – 10 6 6
WP–Dylan Sumnicht; LP–Brandon Hess