Brendon Synder is safe Tuesday night in a WIAA Division 1 regional semifinal at Waterford Union High School. (Rick Benavides/SLN)

 

By Chris Bennett

Sports Correspondent

Hits came at a premium in Tuesday’s WIAA Division 1 high school baseball regional semifinal between Waterford and Racine Park at Waterford.

The Wolverines limited the Panthers to two hits, but tallied just one of their own, and pulled out a 1-0 victory.

Waterford (16-5) plays Westosha Central (16-6) Thursday at Paddock Lake in the regional final.

Waterford is seeded fifth in the sectional bracket. Central is seeded fourth and earned a bye in the semifinals. Park (0-17) was the lowest seed in the 12-team bracket.

The Wolverines’ only run against Park came in the second inning. Brendon Snyder drew a walk, stole second base and scored on a single from Kyle Huckstorf.

Waterford pitchers Zach Stiewe, Cole Weinkauf and Aaron Chapman kept Park’s offense in check. The three combined to limit the Panthers to two hits and struck out 10.

Waterford split with Central during the regular season in Southern Lakes Conference play. The Wolverines beat Central 9-1 May 3 at Waterford and lost 9-3 May 1 at Paddock Lake.

The Wolverines entered the postseason winners of their final two games of the regular season.

Waterford beat Fort Atkinson 5-0 May 24 and beat Wisconsin Lutheran 8-6 May 22, both at Waterford.

Against Fort (8-13), Zach Guenther and Weinkauf limited the Blackhawks to three this and combined to strike out five.

The Wolverines scored two runs in the third and one run in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings.

Andrew Chapman doubled and went 2-for-4 with three RBI. Dave Braun and Griffin McIlwee also each drove in a run.

“Fort Atkinson was a game to get ready for regional play on Tuesday,” Waterford coach Lance Bestland said. “I’m glad we were able to get them – it is hard to sit the last week of the season and not play.

“The players are so used to playing three or four games a week. It helps keeps them focused.”

The game against Wisconsin Lutheran (8-13) marked the Wolverines’ Senior Night, and Bestland said every Waterford senior started and contributed to the win.

The Wolverines trailed 6-3 before scoring five runs in the sixth. Aaron Chapman and Snyder each drove in two runs.

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