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Amateur Baseball: 1st-place A’s drub Willmar

MARSHALL — Cornbelt League frontrunner Marshall needed only eight hits Tuesday to thrash Willmar 17-5 and clinch at least a share of the league title.

The A’s are 9-1 in the Cornbelt and have a two-game lead in the loss column with just two league games remaining.

The A’s (11-1 overall) turned a 4-1 lead into a comfortable 14-1 lead after batting 15 times in a 10-run third inning. A strikeout opened the A’s frame, but three straight walks loaded the bases and leadoff batter Ben Korger opened the floodgates with a two-run single. Five walks and two hit batters followed and sandwiched between was a two-run double from Zach Olson.

The Rails (2-8, 2-12) outhit Marshall, but starting pitcher Todd Gregg and reliever Alex Hatch combined to issue the A’s 17 walks.

Player/manager Darin Ditterich anchored the Rails’ lineup and produced three hits, two of which drove in a run. Tyler Brower and Hatch also had RBI singles.

Willmar is at Atwater today for a non-league game.

Marshall 17, Willmar 5

Willmar 001 012 1 —  5  9 3

Marshall               31(10) 021 x — 17 8 3

HITTING – Willmar: Tyler Brower 1-5 rbi, Andrew Busch 1-4 rbi, Josh Oestreich 1-4, Todd Gregg 1-4 2b run, Alex Hatch 1-4 rbi, Tyler Anderson 1-3 runs-2, Darin Ditterich 3-4 run rbi-2 … Marshall: Ben Korger 1-4 bb-2 runs-3 rbi-4, Leo Zerr 1-1 2b run, Andrew Kinney 1-2 run rbi-3, Jarred Carlson 1-2 runs-2 rbi-3, Ben Sanders 1-2, Zach Olson 2-3 2b run rbi-2, Brandan Alfson 1-1 bb-4 2b runs-2 rbi

PITCHING (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — Willmar: Gregg (L) 2.1-4-12-12-10-2, Hatch 3.2-4-5-4-7-2 … Marshall: Jordon Kontz (W) 4-3-1-1-2-4, Zerr 2-4-3-2-3-1, Kinney 1-2-1-0-1-3