In a final regular season tuneup, Western Dubuque’s baseball team won a high-scoring matchup with former WaMaC rival West Delaware, 13-8, at Farley Park, July 15.
The Bobcats enter the postseason 30-9, identical to the mark of the 2018 state tournament team, as West Delaware completes its regular slate at 14-23-1.
Western Dubuque tends to get the best effort of its opponents, and this one was no exception. The Hawks got on the board in the first inning when Christopher La Rosa’s single drove home leadoff hitter Kyle Cole.
Calvin Harris walked and scored to even things up in the bottom of the inning, but a four-run West Delaware second, including a bases loaded double from Jared Voss, put the Hawks on top 5-1.
The Bobcats answered with a pair in their half of the inning when Sawyer Nauman doubled before Zack Butcher drew a one-out walk. A wild pitch advanced courtesy runner Drake George and Butcher before a single from Harris scored both to make it 5-3 after two.
The Hawks made it 6-3 with a single run in the third before Western Dubuque knotted things up with three runs in the bottom of the frame. Damon Jaeger led off with a double and Kyle Lehmann reached after being hit by a pitch. Zach Bierman’s double plated Jaeger and Nauman’s ground ball scored Lehmann. Matt Maiers’ sacrifice fly to center field knocked home Bierman to make the score 6-6.
The Bobcats broke it open with a five-run fourth on only three hits, sending 11 batters to the plate. Harris doubled and scored on a base hit from Sam Goodman, who promptly stole second, before Lehmann was hit by a pitch for the second time in the contest.
Goodman wheeled home with Zach Bierman at the plate to make it 8-6. Nauman walked before Maiers followed with an RBI-single and a pair of West Delaware errors led to two more runs and an 11-6 Bobcat advantage.
Jaeger’s two-run homer in the fifth made it 12-6 before an RBI single from George scored Lehmann. West Delaware scored twice in the sixth to make the final 13-8.
Offensively for Western Dubuque, Harris was 2-for-3 with two RBIs, Jaeger 2-for-3 with one RBI, Maiers 1-for-3 with two RBIs, George 1-for-1 with one RBI, Nauman 1-for-2 with one RBI while Goodman and Bierman were 1-for-4 with one RBI.
Carter Kluesner got the start on the mound and allowed five runs on six hits in 1 2/3 innings. Payton Quagliano got the win in relief — pitching 4 2/3 innings and allowing three runs on two hits while striking out six and walking six, before yielding to Ben Bryant, who finished with a game-ending strikeout.