Marinette’s Jake Swenson (center) is congratulated by teammates after his game-winning single in the eighth inning Tuesday at Pedersen Ball Park.  EagleHerald/Jody Korch
Marinette’s Jake Swenson (center) is congratulated by teammates after his game-winning single in the eighth inning Tuesday at Pedersen Ball Park.
EagleHerald/Jody Korch
MARINETTE - The Marinette Marines limited the damage early, chipped away and scratched out an impressive 8-7 extra-inning baseball victory over Shawano Tuesday.

Marinette spotted the Hawks a 5-2 lead, gave up the tying run with two outs and two strikes in the seventh inning, and won in the eighth.

Austin Wright started the winning rally with a one-out walk. Nate Kallestad followed with a walk and Wright advanced to third on Austin Benson's flyout. Jake Swenson then lined a game-winning base hit up the middle.

He was looking for a fastball, and teed off on Taylor Prey's 1-1 heater.

"Just a pitch I know I could drive up the middle," Swenson said. "It was a little bit above the knees."

Swenson smashed it similar to the way he cracks slapshots for the M&M Thunder high school hockey team.

"He's been hitting the ball hard," Marinette coach Dave Francour said. "Clutch situation, a lot of pressure on him. Good to see."

Defense was the difference. The Marines stayed close due to some great plays, and Shawano errors helped Marinette to battle back.

Marine starter Ty Bebo struggled in his first outing of the spring. Hunter Ludvigsen singled and scored on a wild pitch in the first, but the damage could have been much worse. With runners on first and second and no outs, Chase Henning hit a shot into the hole. Shortstop Derek Klegin darted over to backhand it, then flipped to third for a forceout.

"Derek made an ESPN highlight film play," Francour said.

In the fourth, Klegin speared Ludvigsen's liner for a rally-killing, inning-ending double play.

Bebo made a backhanded dive at second base to rob Taylor Prey of a hit in the fifth. Rightfielder Quentin Ellie got a good jump on a hard-hit fly for a putout.

By contrast, the Hawks didn't make the plays. A two-out error on a ground ball gave the Marines two runs in the second.

"You can't give a team two runs on a routine play," Shawano coach Rob Wolff said. "They were defensively sound. That's what we're trying to get to, and that's what cost us the ballgame."

Shawano's lead grew to 5-2 in the third on a three-run double deep to right/center by Kyle Wirkus.

Marinette got a run back in the third when Klegin hit a leadoff double, took third on Wright's flyout and scored on Kallestad's sacrifice fly to center.

Swenson started a three-run fourth with a leadoff single, and he took second on an error. Cody Tessmer followed with a single to left, Swenson scored on a balk and Tessmer scored on Jake McMahon's squeeze bunt. Bebo bunted McMahon into scoring position and Ellie lined an RBI single past a pulled-in infield.

Josh Carlson tied the game in the fifth with a solo homer, but Marinette regained the lead in the sixth on Klegin's double and three walks.

Marinette's only error of the game allowed the tying run to score in the seventh.

Shawano fell to 0-4 while the Marines improved to 3-2 overall and in the Bay Conference.

Benson relieved Bebo and pitched two solid innings. Wright worked the final three to earn the win.

"I think it sets the tone for our season," Swenson said. "It shows we may not play our best every night but we can score when we need to."

WP - Austin Wright 3 IP, 1R, 1H, 1W, 2K

LP - Chase Henning 2 IP, 1R, 0H, 4W, 1K

Leading hitters (Marinette): Jake McMahon 2x3, 2B, RBI; Derek Klegin 2x5, 2 2B; Nate Kallestad 1x2, 2B, RBI; Jake Swenson 2x4, 2 RBIs; Quentin Ellie 1x3, RBI; Kyle Wirkus 2x4, 2B, 3 RBIs; Hunter Ludvigsen 2x4; Josh Carlson 1x2, HR

Shawano 104 010 10 - 7

Marinette 021 301 01 - 8