Baseball Around the Horn Week 4

Wildcats finish 3-0 on the week while other teams struggle

By Joe Peine
Posted 5/1/24

The Prescott Cardinals had an up and down week, finishing 0-3 on the road Tuesday against the Altoona Warriors but beating them 9-3 on Thursday at home, then coming up short against the River Falls …

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Baseball Around the Horn Week 4

Wildcats finish 3-0 on the week while other teams struggle


The Prescott Cardinals had an up and down week, finishing 0-3 on the road Tuesday against the Altoona Warriors but beating them 9-3 on Thursday at home, then coming up short against the River Falls Wildcats at home on Friday by a score of 4-3.

Tuesday’s game really could have gone either way, with the only scoring in the whole game coming in the bottom of the fourth inning when Altoona strung a few singles together and plated three. The Cardinals out-hit the Warriors 5-4 in this one, but they lost 3-0.

Thursday in Prescott was the exact opposite type of game; the scoring started early and continued often. Collin Huppert got into trouble early, allowing a single and hitting a batter, but he still managed to strike out the side. The Cardinals put up a crooked number right away in the bottom of the first on the back of a trio of errors by Altoona combined with some timely hitting, taking a 4-0 lead into the second inning.

They added two more in the third and two in the fifth to make it 8-1. Huppert threw 5.1 innings, struck out nine while allowing a pair of earned runs on six hits and two walks. Prescott eventually won 9-3 to split the series.

Of the two losses, Friday’s feels like the bad beat. The Cardinals’ hitters put on a clinic, with nine hits and four walks for a total of 13 baserunners over seven innings, but the Wildcats managed to control the damage and never allow the big hit that would break things open.

Looking forward, the Cardinals have a big week ahead. They play a two-game series against the Amery Warriors, at home on Tuesday at 5 p.m. and then on the road at 5 p.m. Thursday. They then return to Prescott to host two non-conference games, the first against Hastings on Saturday at 2 p.m. and the second on Monday against West Salem at 5 p.m.


The Ellsworth Panthers lost both their games to the Baldwin-Woodville Blackhawks this week, first on the road Tuesday 9-0 and then at home on Thursday 5-2.

There’s a saying amongst pitchers that “walks will haunt,” and the truth of that was definitely showcased in the opening half frame of the Panthers’ home game. All told, there were three walks and three singles in the top of the first inning, resulting in four runs being plated by the Blackhawks.

Ellsworth scored two in the bottom of the second inning when Landan Lampman, Derek Johnson and Parker Peterson strung together some singles of their own to make it a 4-2 game. BW added on one more before the end to win 5-2, but after the opening half inning, the Panthers controlled the game throughout.

Lampman was charged with four earned runs over four innings with four hits, six walks and five strikeouts. The top of the lineup accounted for most of the offense for Ellsworth in this one, with Nolan Kummer notching both of their RBIs.

In what was billed as a three-game slate, Friday’s game wasn’t played due to the weather, so the Panthers will have to wait until Tuesday to right the ship when they host the Somerset Spartans for game one of the split doubleheader. That series will wrap up with game two on the road in Somerset on Thursday, and then they return home to play Spring Valley on Friday night at 7 p.m.


River Falls

The River Falls Wildcats played a great week of ball, finishing 3-0 while beating conference rival New Richmond twice in a split series on Tuesday 5-0 and Thursday 9-5 and then defeating Highway 29 border rival Prescott on their home turf on Friday by a score of 4-3.

River Falls got on the board early after a couple singles by Ben Johnson and Cayden Mueller and some timely baserunning by Tyler Nelson to take a 1-0 lead. That advantage would last until the bottom of the fifth when a Chase Rudolph walk and two singles by Bryce Bevan and Johnson opened the frame. Cody Olson would garner another hit before the end of the inning, and the Wildcats would make it 4-0 going into the sixth inning. They would finish 5-0 while Auden Pankonin pitched a two walk, seven-inning shutout to go along with 10 K’s.

Game two was over by the third inning. River Falls came out and scored four in the first, one in the second and four more in the third to take a 9-0 lead. Cayden Mueller threw five innings of five-run ball (only one of which was earned) with seven hits, two walks and 10 K’s.  Chase McQuade hit a home run, Austin Curti hit a triple and Johnson rounded out the extra base hits with a double.

Friday’s game against Prescott was fought tooth and nail on both sides. River Falls scored two in the top of the first , and the Cardinals evened the score in the bottom. The Wildcats scored one in the third and Prescott tied it in the fourth.

The difference in the game was River Falls’ final run they scored in the fifth inning after McQuade singled but then advanced to second and then to third on the same Cardinal error. Jack Manninen came in to pinch hit for Mueller and got the run in on a groundout to take a 4-3 lead that would hold until the end.

The game was pitched by the combination Nelson (3 IP), Manninen (2 IP) and Curti (2 IP). Curti and Bevan each got doubles, but it was McQuade’s 2-3 with three runs, an RBI and a hit-by-pitch that created most of the opportunities for the Wildcats in this victory.

The Wildcats continue the conference season this week with two games against Hudson, one at home at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday and one in Hudson on Thursday at 5 p.m. They host Osceola on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. to round out the week.

Spring Valley

The Spring Valley Cardinals lost all three of their games this week, first to the Mondovi Buffaloes on Monday 7-4, then on Thursday to the Boyceville Bulldogs 10-2 and finally to the Baldwin-Woodville Blackhawks on Friday.

Spring Valley held the lead in Monday’s game after scoring one run in the top of the first when Diego Schmitt tripled to score Cade Stasiek from first base.

Mondovi answered in the bottom of the first inning, putting up two runs and taking the lead. They would add on four more in the second and one in the fourth to make it a 7-1 ballgame. The Cardinals would plate three in the top of the sixth when they strung together a series of singles and walks, but it wouldn’t be enough as they fell to the Buffaloes 7-4.

Schmitt was charged with six earned runs over two innings of play while striking out two, but he also filled out the box score offensively, going 2-3 with an RBI triple, a run scored, a walk and a stolen base. Cade Stasiek also had a nice game, going 3-4 with two runs and a swiped bag of his own.

The Cardinals will look to put this week behind them as they prepare for another trio of tilts. First up, they headed to Elmwood-Plum City on Monday at 5 p.m., then they return home on Thursday to play Colfax. They finish out the week with a non-conference game in Ellsworth at 7 p.m. under the Friday night lights.

Elmwood-Plum City

The Elmwood-Plum City Wolves went 0-3 this week, losing to the Glenwood City Hilltoppers 6-4 on Monday and then losing back-to-back games against Elk Mound 20-1 on Thursday and Eau Claire Immanuel Lutheran 11-6 on Friday.

It’s been an inauspicious start to the season for the Wolves, who have found their way into the win column just once back on April 9 at home against Cadott.

There have been some good performances offensively, but the overall theme is that the pitchers have been struggling with control, not finding the strike zone and getting behind in counts. They walked nine over five innings on Monday and a whopping 14 over five innings on Thursday.

Lucas Glaus got the nod for Friday’s game, and while he allowed three runs over four innings, he also racked up seven K’s while walking just two. He was relieved by Hudson Hewitt who was unable to work himself out of a jam early in the fifth, and they fell to Eau Claire 11-6.

EPC was in the lead 1-0 after the first inning when Glaus walked, advanced on a grounder to second and then stole third before finally scoring on a passed ball by EC Immanuel’s catcher. That type of small ball, opportunistic baserunning is exactly what the Wolves needed to get the offense going again.

EPC would add on one more in the fifth, two in the sixth and two more in the seventh, but they would ultimately fall short, losing 11-6.

The whole starting lineup got on base in this one, with Blake Allen leading the way offensively batting out of the two-hole. He went 2-4 with a double, an RBI, two runs scored and a stolen base. Brett Lifto, Brewer Link and Robbie Duffy also had extra base hits, and six of the starting nine logged a swiped bag.

The Wolves will look to keep the walks down and the bats hot as they head into another three-game slate this week. They started at home on Monday when they hosted Spring Valley, and then they go on the road for a two-step of games at Durand-Arkansaw on Thursday and at Clear Lake on Friday. All games start at 5 p.m.

Prescott Cardinals, River Falls Wildcats, Ellsworth Panthers, EPC Wolves, Spring Valley Cardinals, boys baseball