Mudhens continue to roll in CCVL rivalry
In the last seven meetings against the Red Wing Aces, the Miesville Mudhens have dominated the Classic Cannon Valley League rivalry.
Following Tuesday's 7-0 Independence Day victory at the Red Wing Athletic Field, Miesville has outscored Red Wing 63-7 in the last seven meetings, with the Aces' last win coming on May 25, 2015.
"Coming off a title last year, we got a good group of veteran guys and a good mix of young guys sprinkled in," said Mudhens manager Chris Olean. "It's a good recipe for us."
In the annual Fourth of July meeting, Miesville provided plenty of fireworks with 12 hits. Five of those came from leadoff batter Charles Bruchu, who was a perfect 5-for-5 with two doubles, two runs scored and two RBI.
"They had a lefty going and we just wanted to really focus on staying the other way and not get too big," Bruchu said. "A couple of us were able to do that, for sure. Myself included. Don't pull the ball, stay up the middle and good things happen."
Olean added, "Chuck was due. He's actually been slumping a little bit if you look at the stats. He was a little bit snake-bitten and he was able to come out of it today which was good to see."
Behind him, the Mudhens' lineup mashed the Aces' pitchers, with Brian Sprout cracking a solo home run to left field to lead off the fourth inning as part of a 2-for-4 day. Jordy Horsch, the No. 9 hitter, was also 2-for-4 with three runs scored.
"One through nine, we have competitive batters at the plate every single game," Bruchu said. "Even if our No. 3-4 guys don't have their best day, even if our top two guys don't have their best day, we have depth all throughout the lineup. Everyone hits. Someone gets hot every game and we get runs even if some of your normal studs have off days."
While the score didn't show it, Red Wing was able to get plenty of knocks off Miesville's pitching with 10 hits. Brodie Smith was 3-for-4 with a double, Spencer Schroeder 2-3 and both Corey Tauer and Adam Thygesen were 2-for-4.
Only one Red Wing player — Kyle Blahnik in the fourth inning — managed to reach third base.
"With those 10 hits, we didn't have we had a lot of chances with guys on second and third and less than two outs," said Aces manager Justin Plein.
Five of Red Wing's hits came with two outs and nobody on base. And, the Mudhens' defense along with pitcher Shannon Ahern were able to coax Red Wing into four double plays.
Ahern pitched eight innings for Miesville, tallying seven strikeouts with nine hits and no walks allowed.
"Ahern did a really good job of minimizing (damage)," Olean said. "The double plays helped with the pitch count and let him go eight innings. The middle played really well. Deryk (Marks) and Pat (Kelly) had some good turns."
The Aces' Sam Palmatier was pegged with the loss after giving up five runs on seven hits and no walks. Red Wing's defense had four errors, which led directly to two Mudhen runs.
"Sam threw great for us. He was working low, shooting knees, stuff like that," Plein said. "We didn't make a few plays behind him early. He worked out of a lot of jams in those first four innings. They could have scored a lot more, but Sam worked out of a lot of things."