MARSHALL - At the end of a 5-2 loss to Pipestone on Tuesday, the Marshall baseball team knew too many chances got left on the field.
Playing at Legion Field for the first time this season, the Tigers left 10 runners stranded in the game, and the Arrows' bats got going early in the game, leaving Marshall stunned in a Southwest Conference loss.
"(Pipestone) definitely played a good game today, give them credit," said Tigers third baseman Matt Campion. "They came to play and we didn't. We have to come to play next time."
Photo by Joe Brown
Pipestone’s Gunnar Manderscheid, left, slides into home as Marshall catcher Colton Peterson gathers the ball in the fourth inning of Tuesday’s Southwest Conference game at Legion Field. Peterson was charged with an error on the play as the Arrows came away with the 5-2 victory.
From the first at-bat, the Arrows' hitters were moving runners along, rocking Marshall starting pitcher Riley Carpenter for three straight singles to open the game. At the No. 3 spot, Matt Haraldson belted an RBI single. Austin Evans followed up with a sacrifice fly to bring in the second run. Marshall right fielder Cory Deutz pulled off a 9-3 double play, but Pipestone's damage had already been done.
Marshall head coach Steve Fleck said it was a struggle on the mound for Carpenter, who went 3 1/3 innings in the loss.
"We talked afterwards and I don't think he threw much for strikes other than fastballs," Fleck said. "He had a hard time getting his breaking ball over. When you're sitting 3-0 or 2-1 in the count, they know a fastball's coming.
Pipestone200 300 0-5 5 1
Marshall000 020 0-2 8 1
P-Matt Haraldson; M-Riley Carpenter, Aaron Mathiowetz (4). WP-Haraldson. LP-Carpenter. 2B: P-Nate Dubbelde; M-Carpenter 2, Matt Campion. LOB: P-4; M-10.
"(Pitching) was probably the most frustrating thing today," Fleck added. "With the new bat rules the way they are, go after them. Make them prove they can hit it, and we didn't do that."
In the bottom of the first, Mason Schnaible (2-for-3) hit a leadoff single, and Leo Zerr walked to put runners on first and second. But the Arrows (1-1 Southwest, 3-1 overall) put together three straight outs to end the threat. With two outs in the second, the Tigers put together three straight singles to load the bases. But again, Pipestone, led by Haraldson on the mound, was able to work out of the jam unscathed.
In the first two innings, Marshall had five runners left on base.
"The first three innings, we had people there (in scoring position) and couldn't get them in," Fleck said. "They just didn't fall today."
With one out in the top of the fourth and runners at second and third, an error at the plate brought in another run for Pipestone. Eric Buffington, the Arrows' No. 9 hitter, followed that up with a two-run single for the 5-0 advantage. Aaron Mathiowetz came on in relief for the Tigers, holding Pipestone hitless for the rest of the game.
"That fourth inning really hurt us," Fleck said. "I think we lost our composure there."
Looking for any sort of spark, Campion gave Marshall a pick-me-up in the top of the fifth with a diving stop, throwing out Gunnar Manderscheid for the final out. Leading off the bottom of the inning, Campion came through again with a double to right-center. Carpenter followed with an RBI double, and Alex Fenske cut the deficit to three with an RBI single. Carpenter was 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles.
"It was a good momentum shift going our way," Campion said of his diving stop, "and we brought that into the next half-inning with Riley and I getting doubles. We were playing good until the end after that."
With Fenske and Colton Peterson on base with two outs, Deutz came to the plate as the game-tying run. But Haraldson (7 innings, 3 strikeouts, 3 walks) coaxed Deutz into a popout to end the threat.
From there, the Tigers were unable to get a runner on base, going through two consecutive 1-2-3 innings to end the game.
"At the varsity level now, every game, we're going to see everyone's best pitcher and everyone's best lineup," Fleck said. "There's no days off for us."
Now at 1-1 overall and 0-1 in the Southwest, the Tigers look to get back in the win column at Redwood Valley.