Stratford wins D3 baseball state championship for first time in school history

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APPLETON, Wis. (WSAW) -- After picking up their first state baseball tournament win Wednesday, the Stratford Tigers completed their dream season, defeating Markesan to win the D3 state championship 9-4.

Both Straford and Markesan had never made a state championship appearance in baseball.

Markesan took a 3-2 lead into the 6th inning, but a 6 run 7th helped put the Tigers into the lead, a lead they wouldn't let go of on the way to their state title.

This is the Tigers first state title of the year after finishing second in volleyball, football and wrestling.

"It leaves us with a little bit sweeter taste in our mouth," said Stratford senior Eli Drexler. "You know. Nothing wrong with silver, but gold definitely tastes a little sweeter. We made a couple of jokes that we'll never be able to pull out first. It's just not in our blood, but we did it. That's great for the town of Stratford and for us as a whole."

Starting pitcher Chandler Schmidt pitched a complete game with only three earned runs and six strikeouts. He was the player on the bottom of the dog pile.

"They tackled me on my side, so my ribs were starting to crunch," said Stratford junior Schmidt. "It was worth it. Every minute was worth it. There is no words. It's just special being part of history and playing with my teammates. It's fun."