Port baseball ends long losing streak

Klassen, Fleischmann star on the pitcher’s mound; Mueller, Ross come up with clutch run-scoring hits
Ozaukee Press staff

A 14-year losing streak — about as long as some of the players are old — came to a close for the Port Washington High School baseball team last Saturday.

The Pirates toppled mighty West Bend West for the first time since 2005 in the second game of a doubleheader on the road, 3-1.

“It’s a special moment, beating West Bend West is hard to do,” coach C.J. Koehler said.

The game turned into a pitching battle won by Pirate George Klassen. The junior who has committed to pitch at Purdue University, started and threw five innings, allowing two hits and four walks while whiffing 12, using his 90 mph fastball to his advantage.

“George was really good, and it was nice to see him put it all together. He’s gotten better every step this year. He’s made a giant leap in the last two weeks,” Koehler said.

Beau Fleischmann pitched the final two innings, allowing two hits and one run while striking out one.

“He did what he does for us all year, comes in after George, mixes up the speeds and just gets outs. Our defense made plays behind him,” Koehler said.

The Pirates scored all their runs in the fifth inning. Joe Yandry led off with a single — “he’s been swinging the bat so well for us,” Koehler said — and Adam Baierl executed a sacrifice bunt to move Yandry to second.

The Spartans then went to their ace, Gavin Hinckley, who throws near 90 mph and Koehler said is getting looks from Division 1 colleges.

Patrick Lippe was the first Pirate to face him.

“As a freshman, he didn’t back down,” Koehler said, adding Lippe worked Hinckley for nearly 10 pitches before earning a walk.

Klassen followed with a walk that loaded the bases with two outs. Up came Nolan Mueller.

The senior catcher, with a two-strike count, hit a two-RBI single to left field, and Rob Ross followed with an RBI single to right field — both opposite-field hits.

“That was our strategy and it was awesome to see,” Koehler said.

The Spartans got a solo home run from Logan Rupnow in the seventh inning, but never mounted a threat to tie the game.

Port made one error in the game on the Spartans’ first batter. They played cleanly after that.

The Pirates had to clear their heads after the opening game, a 17-1 shellacking in five innings.

“I told the guys before the game,  something similar had happened (before), they run-ruled Cedarburg in the first game and lost the second,” Koehler said.

In the opener, Ethan Bornhofer started and allowed two runs in the first inning due to two errors.

“That forced him to throw more pitches. He threw the ball well again. We’re going to continue to lean on him going forward,” Koehler said.

After walks to three of the first four batters in the third, Koehler went to his bullpen and the Spartans pounced.

West plated nine runs in the third and six in the fourth, taking advantage of pitching and fielding struggles. Port used a total of four pitchers.

Rupnow shut down the Pirates from the mound. Fleischmann drove a ball to right-center to score Port’s run.

The Pirates went to 3-8 in the North Shore Conference and 6-10 overall. West is 8-5 in the NSC.

Port was scheduled to host Homestead on Wednesday, play at West Bend East at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, host a doubleheader against Nicolet at 10 a.m. Saturday, play at non-conference foe Plymouth on

Monday, host Cedarburg on Tuesday and host Waukesha South on Wednesday.

Grafton beat Homestead last Friday, 2-1, before losing by the same score on the road to the Highlanders on Saturday.

They were to plat at West Bend East Tuesday, host the Suns on Wednesday, play a doubleheader at West Bend West on Saturday and at Whitefish Bay on Tuesday.



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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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Port Washington, WI 53074
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