Marinette Legion’s Jake McMahon fires a pitch during the first inning Thursday at Pedersen Ball Park. McMahon pitched a shutout against Menominee.EagleHerald/Jody Korch
Marinette Legion’s Jake McMahon fires a pitch during the first inning Thursday at Pedersen Ball Park. McMahon pitched a shutout against Menominee.
EagleHerald/Jody Korch
MARINETTE - The red, white and blue bases at Pedersen Ball Park had plenty of action in the annual Fourth of July clash between Marinette and Menominee, but Marinette was the only team to dent home plate.
Jake McMahon struck out 12 while staring down a pair of Red Wave scoring threats in a 4-0 victory before the largest crowd of the season at Pedersen Ball Park.
"My fastball was working good and my curveball was off and on, but it was coming through when I needed it," said McMahon.
Post 146 put McMahon in stress mode in the first inning when Jaden Kleinke scorched a leadoff double to left and Ryan Woods beat out an infield single.
McMahon dug in to strike out the next two hitters and forced an infield fly to slam the door.
"Runners at first and third with no outs and we don't get one (run)," Hofer said. "That hurt."
McMahon threw 106 pitches, with 82 of them strikes and allowed just one walk. Four of his K's came on called third strikes.
"Jake pitches very well under pressure," coach Brian Lesandrini said. "Our pitching's been great and we got another great performance from Jake today. He's pitched like that all summer and the defense behind him has been very good."
With Marinette holding a 3-0 lead in the fifth inning, Menominee loaded the bases with one out on a walk to Mark Pulver and singles from Kleinke and Woods.
McMahon was up to the challenge again, notching a strikeout and coaxing a bouncer to short to end the inning.
"I just tried to get them to put the ball in play and trust my defense," McMahon explained.
The Red Wave outhit Marinette 6-5, but Post 39 used their speed to make the most of its limited opportunities. Marinette scored in all three innings it got its leadoff hitter on base.
Derek Klegin opened the Marinette first with a single, stole second an scored on Nate Kallestad's single to center.
Klegin was the ignitor again in the third inning with a leadoff walk and he stole second. Scott Eldredge's bunt hugged the first-base line and he beat the throw to first as Klegin coasted into third.
Eldredge drew a throw to second and was thrown out, but Klegin raced home on the throw.
Marinette scored an unearned run with two outs in the fourth inning to take a 3-0 lead.
Ty Bebo kept the inning alive with a single to center and swiped second. After Cody Tessmer walked, an infield throwing error allowed Bebo to score.
Luke Kelly and Beau DeLaet drew back-to-back walks to open the Marinette seventh. Menominee erased Kelly on a grounder back to the mound, but Bebo pushed the lead to 4-0 with a sac fly to center.
Kleinke capped a 3 for 4 day at the plate with a two-out double in the seventh, but McMahon closed out his shutout by forcing a grounder to short.
The Marinette pitching staff has allowed just 14 runs during a nine-game winning streak.
"We're playing good in all phases of the game," said Lesandrini. "Our focus has been real good. We're minimizing our mistakes and taking advantage of mistakes."
Kleinke backed up his three-hit day at the plate with a strong pitching effort. He struck out six and walked four while going the distance.
Woods added two hits for the Red Wave.
Klegin reached base three times and scored twice from his leadoff spot for Marinette.

Marinette (16-7, 6-0 Fox River Valley North Division) plays host to Oconto in doubleheader Tuesday while Menominee (8-9-1, 1-3 North Division) begins a stretch of four straight games at Escanaba Monday.
"We'll take a little break," Hofer explained. "It's the dog days of baseball. Hot, long days, they're coming from jobs. It's hard to keep your focus all the time, but I thought we did a pretty good job of that today."
The crowd observed a moment of silence for former Marinette player Tyler Walk, who died Tuesday.
WP - Jake McMahon 7IP, 0R, 6H, 1W, 12K
LP - Jaden Kleinke 6IP, 4R, 3ER, 5H, 6K 4W
Leading Hitters: Marinette (Derek Klegin 1x2, 2R; Nate Kallestad 1x3, RBI; Austin Wright 1x3; Ty Bebo 1x2, RBI) Menominee (Jaden Kleinke 3x4, 2 2Bs; Ryan Woods 2x4)
Menominee 000 000 0 - 0
Marinette 101 101 x - 4