Badger State Battle: Quick Hits, Day 3

Wisconsin Staff

Each year, the PBR Wisconsin staff hosts the Badger State Battle at the Woodside Complex sites in Mauston and the Dells as a way to celebrate the roots baseball has grown in the state of Wisconsin. The field is limited to programs that call our state home, pitting the top Wisconsin natives against one another. Following each gameday, we’ll go through the day’s highlights inside these Quick Hits posts.

Continue on below to view yesterday’s biggest takeaways.


+ Midwest Halos 16U Red defeated ISA 2023 White 8-0. LHP Tayton Herron (West Bend West, 2023) paved the way for his team on the mound, throwing a five inning complete game allowing one hit, four walks and striking out one. OF Michael Merline (Oak Creek, 2023) and INF Vidal Colon (University School, 2023) both homered for the Halos in their win. 

+ ISA Stars 15U Royal won both their games on Saturday, out-scoring their opponents 25-5. INF/RHP Javin Gauthier (De Pere, 2024; Illinois State) paced the way on both sides of the ball for ISA. The future Redbird went 2-for-3 at the dish, driving three runs in, and struck eight batters out across six innings of work. INF Carter Kallies (Bay Port, 2024) had three hits in the Stars’ first win. INF/RHP Donatello Badalamenti (Pulaski, 2024) doubled and finished game two with three hits, bringing two runners home. 1B/LHP Gavin Lettenberger (Manitowoc Lincoln, 2024) knocked in three on two hits, while OF/RHP Easton Arendt (De Pere, 2024) struck six batters out across four scoreless innings, allowing just one hit. 

+ Edge Baseball topped Thundercats 15U 4-3 to start gameplay at Edgewood College on Saturday morning. The Thundercats were down 4-1 heading into the bottom of the seventh inning and would go on to score two runs to make the score 4-3, but that’s all the Cats would be able to push across in the final half-inning. Edge Baseball put up three runs in the first inning to get out to an early 3-0 lead at the time. Luke DiLorenzo (James Madison Memorial HS, 2024) got the start for Edge Baseball; he tossed 6.1 strong innings while only allowing two earned runs to line himself up for the win. Jameson Johnson (Pecatonica, 2024) and Auden Jatczak (Monona Grove, 2024) would both go on to rip back-to-back doubles in the top of the sixth inning to push Edge’s lead to 4-0 at the time. Carter Morrison (Deforest HS, 2024; Thundercats) ripped an RBI single to give the Cats their first run of the game in the bottom of the sixth. 

+ Turn 2 Athletics and CBT Wolfpack 17U squared off in a fairly high-scoring affair that resulted in a 13-11 win for Turn 2. OF Luke Erickson (Eau Claire Memorial, 2022) tripled twice for Turn 2, while INF Cole Bakkum (Eau Claire North, 2022) and OF Jalen Pascal (Eau Claire North, 2022) each had two hits of their own. For CBT, LHP Owen DePrez (Luxembourg-Casco, 2022) homered and drove in three runs, while INF/RHP Easton Plachetka (Hortonville, 2022) finished with two hits. 

+ Hitters 2024 continues to show well this weekend, blowing past their opponent on Saturday morning with a 9-0 win. OF Cade Palkowski (Oak Creek, 2024) has been on fire all weekend and kept that trend rolling today, smacking two extra-base hits, including a home run, and driving in four. OF RJ Thomae (Hartford, 2024) tripled twice into the opposite gap, finishing the day with three total hits and three runs scored. Getting the nod for Hitters on the mound was RHP Mike Schoon (University School, 2024), who looks the part of a top arm in the state’s incoming sophomore class. The well-proportioned, projectable right-handed showed off an 80-83 mph fastball from a low release angle that entered the zone with natural run and carry. He mixed in both his secondary pitches as a change of pace, landing them for strikes to play off his fastball. Schoon went five scoreless innings, allowing just one hit and striking out seven. 

+ GRB Rays MKE Yellow 16U defeated BLG Replacements in a high scoring affair, 11-10. Lucas Farin (Franklin, 2023) was the hero for GRB, hitting a walkoff single into center field plating the winning run for his club. GRB had a big sixth inning to get back into the game, scoring five runs led by a big triple by Aiden Swartwout (Port Washington, 2023) to the left center field gap. Swartwout showed a smooth, fluid swing, and got on top of the baseball with solid timing. Hunter Abitz (Kettle Moraine Lutheran, 2023) and River Lindsey (Muskego, 2023) also had two hits a piece for GRB, while Abitz showed a strong arm with clean exchanges behind the plate, and Lindsey showed versatility at both CF and SS, flashing a strong arm and overall quickness getting to balls in play. 

+ STIKS Black 17U and PBA Gold 17U clashed in a competitive contest this past afternoon, ultimately ending in a 3-3 tie. RHP Thomas Harper (Wauwatosa East, 2022; Illinois Stats) got the nod for STiKS, striking seven out across four innings of work. Harper attacked hitters with an 86-88 mph fastball that plays on a steep plane because of how he works on top of the baseball due to his lengthy levers. He also flipped in a few breaking balls in the 73-75 mph range. Down by a run in the bottom of the seventh, OF Carson Hansen (Pewaukee, 2022) crushed a no-doubt blast over the right field fence to even things up and securing the tie - ultimately helping STiKS from a bracket play standpoint. Seven different PBA bats had at least one hit, led by INF TJ Williams (Racine Horlick, 2022), who doubled and stole a bag. 

+ GRB Rays Yellow 17U defeated Midwest Halos Red 2022, 8-3. GRB showcased a pair of solid arms in this one, as LHP Josh Jansen (Deforest, 2022) and Luke Shepski (Waunakee, 2022) combined to allow only 3 runs on as many hits. Jansen pitched five innings, utilizing a fastball sitting 79-82 mph, topping at 83 mph that played straight and carried through the zone, as well as a curveball that topped 68 mph that showed depth to keep hitters off balanced, as both were used to consistently get outs. Shepski shined out of the bullpen, pitching two innings of relief. He featured a fastball 83-84 mph, topping at 86 mph, that also played straight and was used heavily his entire appearance. He also mixed in curveballs at 67 mph, some sliders at 74-75 mph, and an occasional CH 74-75 mph to keep hitters guessing. Offensively, GRB was led by right-handed hitting INF Jalen Gellings (Campbellsport, 2022). Gellings had three hits to go along with four RBIs, highlighted by a booming triple into the right-center gap to break the game open for his team. He continues to cement himself as one of the top uncommitted bats in the state’s 2022 class. 

+ PTA Cardinal defeated GRB Rays Yellow 17U to end the day Saturday, by a score of 11-3. RHP Benjamin Kasten (Whitnall, 2022) was solid on the mound, pitching four innings, giving up zero earned runs and striking out five. His fastball sat 82-84 mph, and topped at 85 mph, a number he actually hit multiple times, and showed a little bit of cut action. Kasten threw a heavy dose of heaters this evening, blowing it by opposing hitters in all types of counts. He also mixed in a curveball at 66-69 mph. Kasten, a 6-foot-3, 200-pound athlete, is a notable arm to keep an eye on, especially since he’s still uncommitted. RHP Jack Hrdlick (Marquette, 2022) came into the game in its last inning, and was efficient as could be, striking out the side on only 11 pitches. His fastball sat 81-84 mph, topping at 85 mph, with some slight run to it. He also threw a curveball 68-73 mph that showed good depth, and sharp, late break. Hrdlick had feel for both of his pitches, and flashed the ability to land his breaking ball for strikes. 

+ ISA Stars Royal 2023 defeated GRB Rays MKE White 16U 6-0. RHP Quinn Falish (De Pere, 2023) stole the show, throwing six strong innings and striking out 11, holding his opponents to just three hits total. Falish flashed a fastball in the mid 80’s, sitting 83-84 while topping out at 85 mph.1B Eli Zollar (Ashwaubenon, 2023) collected two hits and drove in two runs for ISA. C Keegan Yohnk (Bloomer, 2023) and RHP Cole Bensen (Bay Port, 2023) also had two hits for Royal in the win. 

+ PTA Cardinal defeated Velocity Baseball 16U 10-1 in five innings. RHP Leo Berger, (Rufus King, 2023) threw five complete innings, striking out five without giving up an earned run. He reached an 83 mph high with his fastball, sitting in the 80-82 mph range. He helped his own cause at the plate as well, leading the Cardinal offense with two hits, including a triple, and two RBIs. C/3B Jake Olszewski (Germantown, 2023) tripled and drove in three runs in the win. 

+ Delta Baseball defeated STiKS Red 15U 13-6. Drew Sparacino (Wauwatosa West, 2024) and Ben Van Bell (Whitefish Bay, 2024) were perfect at the plate, each going 3-for-3 with two RBIs.  Aidan Dobson (Nicolet, 2024), Johnny Guo (Whitefish Bay, 2023) and Joseph Jewell (Nicolet, 2024) all had two hits for Delta, while Dobson drove in three runs. 

+ Brew State 17U squared off with GRB White for what looked to be an exciting matchup. Brew State came away with the win 9-3 in six innings to improve to 2-1 on the weekend. RHP Luke Sopha (Pewaukee HS, 2022) came out of the pen for Brew State and impressed with a loose/quick arm and easy velocity. His fastball worked 81-85 mph touching 86 mph; paired with a sharp 11/5 breaking ball in the 68-73 mph range. The extremely projectable and long-limbed Sopha looks to have plenty more in the tank. Brew State handed the ball to RHP Luke Langjahr (Brookfield Central HS, 2022) to start the game; Langjahr went 4 complete innings while only allowing one earned run. The right-hander featured a fastball that sat 80-82 mph early on, settling in at 78-81 mph later in the game. His breaking ball was his go-to secondary pitch this game; featuring sharp 10/4 action at 66-72 mph that he was able to use both front-door and back-foot to hitters. GRB White’s Branden Garde (Sun Prairie HS, 2022) jumped out as an intriguing prospect; featuring soft hands in the field, quick transfer, fluid/athletic footwork, easy range and a strong arm across the diamond. Garde went on to make an impressive back-handed play deep in the SS/3B hole to nab the runner at first. Nick Doubek (Pewaukee HS, 2022; Brew State) had a strong showing at the plate. The right-handed hitter started in a narrow/open stance, fluid rhythm, long stride, loose swing; made loud contact all day including a line-drive up the middle that screamed off the bat. 

+ JBA Clutch Select 17U faced off against STIKS Academy Red in an exciting matchup between two talented teams. The game ended in a 4-4 tie but did not disappoint from a talent aspect. RHP Hoyt Keller (Wautoma HS, 2022) toed the rubber for JBA. The right-hander ran his fastball 81-86 mph and touched 87 mph once in the first inning. He went to a sharp slider in the 77-79 mph range to back-up his fastball. Keller’s battery-mate was rising junior Blake Nichols. Nichols impressed behind the plate with soft hands, athletic footwork, quick/directional feet out of the crouch and also was a willing blocker. He also showcased a strong arm as he threw out a runner attempting to take second base. STIKS went with RHP Braydon Cooper (Catholic Memorial HS, 2022) to start the game for them. Cooper possessed an easy/quick arm that produced an 81-85 mph fastball. He also went to a sharp 69-71 mph curveball with 11/5 shape. SS Keagen Jirschele (JBA), a rising sophomore at Wausau West HS, showed off some notable athleticism in the field. Jirschele featured smooth hands, quick transfer, range to both sides of his glove, fluid footwork and a strong arm across the field. His most impressive play of the day was one that didn’t even record an out. The 5-foot-7 Jirschele jumped and came within inches of a line-drive hit well over his head that even a taller frame would have trouble getting to.

+ GRB MKE Yellow 15U defeated Silver Sluggers Blue 10-2 in five innings. GRB put up six runs in the top of the fifth inning to put the game away for good. Brady Anderson (Waukesha, 2024) and Jackson Leibman (Fort Atkinson HS, 2024) both had RBI singles in the inning. GRB pushed across four runs in the first inning to jump out to an early lead. Jake LeSaily (Brookfield East HS, 2024) roped an RBI double to center-field and made the score 4-0 at the time. 

+ ISA Stars Royal 17U knocked off Silver Sluggers 17U 10-5. The Stars came back in the top of the seventh with seven runs to take the lead and eventually close out the win. The loudest barrel of their seven run inning came from Jaicee Foster (Southwest HS, 2022) with a double to left-field that ended up plating two runs. Foster produces impressive exit velocity off the bat with his strong/physical frame and is a catalyst in the middle of the ISA lineup. 

+ Stars Baseball 16U and GRB White faced off for the final game of the night at Edgewood College. The Stars went on to win 12-2 in six innings to improve to 3-1 on the weekend. RHP Kolden Hunter (Hortonville HS, 2023) got the start for the Stars going 6 innings while allowing only one earned run and showing off a true three-pitch mix. Hunter featured a fastball that sat 81-83 mph early on, settling in at 78-81 mph later in the game. The right-hander threw two different breaking balls; a slider with sharp 10/4 action at 74-76 mph and a curveball with biting 11/5 shape in the 68-70 mph range. Hunter filled up the zone with all three pitches to keep the GRB hitters guessing all game. At 6-foot-3 211-pounds, Hunter is an intriguing prospect; also showed potential at the plate with a two-run single up the middle early in the game. Drew Joten (Little Chute HS, 2023; Stars Baseball) capped off a solid night at the plate with a rocket three-run double down the left-field line in the top of the fifth inning to make the score 10-1 at the time.

+ RHP Craig Kabat (Bay Port, 2024) stood out as a follow arm in the state’s incoming sophomore class. The quick-armed righty showed a low-80s fastball that played with jump and carry into the zone and paired it with advanced feel to spin a breaking ball. He didn’t allow a hit over his five innings of work, striking out six. 

GRB Rays 15U Green squeaked their way into Sunday’s bracket play after a walk-off 3-2 win, scoring the winning run on a throwing error in the bottom of seven. They were put into position to win thanks to a dominant outing by OF/LHP Logan Dunn (Wautoma, 2024), who’s cementing himself as one of the top-end prospects in the state’s 2024 class. An athletic left-hander that can really swing it too, Dunn went six strong innings, striking out eight and walking just one.