The Muskego Impact opened their 2014 baseball season over the Memorial Day Weekend. They look to win the Eastern Division Champions in the Land O’ Lakes Baseball League for the third year in a row and again move on to play in the Grand Championship again. They have lost some veteran players who have retired or moved on, but they picked up some good young players who have joined the team after graduating from Muskego High. Also, Brian Prusinski has returned to the team as a player-coach and is looking forward to the challenge. He will be working with head coach, Rick Henneberry.
The Impact started out by splitting a doubleheader against North Shore last week Sunday and then dropped one on Wednesday night to the New Berlin Lakers before taking a doubleheader from the Butler Bulldogs this past Sunday.
In the first game of the year, an 8-4 loss to North Shore at home, the ace of the staff last year, Dave Mihlsimmer, was not his usually stellar self as he had some control problems early on. He was tagged with the loss as he allowed 5 earned runs on 11 hits while striking out 9 and walking 3. The Impact fell behind 4-0 in the first inning and could never recover as their offense could only muster up 6 hits with Nick Paffhausen coming up with 3 of those hits. However, they did recover in the second game of the doubleheader winning that one 1-0 as Cole Borek pitched a 2 hitter in picking up the victory. Borek struck out 6 and issued 3 base-on-balls and Josh Beatka drove in the lone run of the game with a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the 3rd inning.
In Wednesday night’s game at New Berlin, the Impact got down early again and could not recover. They were down 5-0 before scoring 3 runs in the top of the 7th inning, and eventually lost the game 7-3. Peter Jewel took the loss pitching 4 innings, allowing 5 runs on 8 hits, while striking out 5 and walking 3. He may have fared better, but some mental mistakes by some of the younger players did not help. Josh Breider did see some action on the mound pitching 3 innings, allowing 2 runs on 2 hits, striking out two and walking 3. The Impact did pick up 9 hits in the game with two each coming from Jack Jewell and TJ Anderson. However, 6 of those 9 hits came in that 7th inning when a double by Jewell, triple by Josh Beatka, and singles by Nick Schmidlkofer, Anderson, Breider and Cole Borek plated all their runs.
This past Sunday at Butler, the Impact broke out of their offensive slump pounding our 22 hits as they won both ends of a doubleheader, taking the first games 5-2 and the second one 9-1. In the first game, they collected 13 hits as Nick Schmidlkofer pounded out 3 and Nick Paffhausen, Brian Prusinski and Kevin Schoenbach had 2 each. Cole Borek (2-0) picked up his second victory of the season with his second complete game as he allowed just one earned run on 5 hits, striking out 3 and walking just one.
In the second game, Dave Mihlsimmer (1-1) was once again his stellar self rebounding from the week prior as he picked up the victory pitching six innings, allowing just the one run on 2 hits while striking out 4 with no walks. Aaron Kiewig pitched the final frame and only allowed one hit and struck out one. On offense, Kevin Schoenbach picked up 3 hits, and Josh Beatka and Nick Schmidlkofer had 2 each. Beatka had a double and a triple and Schmidlkofer picked up his second triple of the day.
The Impact will return to action next weekend as the take on New Berlin at historic Horn Field in a Sunday doubleheader starting at noon. Come out and cheer on your hometown team in their quest to repeat their success of last year. This Wednesday’s game at Racine has been postponed with a makeup date yet to be determined.
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