Central Wisconsin’s finest
A look at former local athletes who are now performing in the pros (Photo courtesy of Columbus Crew SC)
By Paul Lecker
Finlay continues to shine for Columbus Crew
Ethan Finlay, a 2008 graduate of Marshfield High School, scored both goals for the Columbus Crew SC in its 2-1 victory over the New York Red Bulls in a July 4 MLS match.
Finlay now has seven goals and 10 assists this season, his fourth with the Columbus Crew SC. He is the eighth player in team history to have 10 assists in a season while scoring at least five goals. With three more goals in the team’s final 16 games, Finlay would become only the second player in team history to have at least 10 goals and 10 assists in a season.
Finlay, who turns 25 years old on Aug. 6, has helped the Crew to a 6-6-6 record this season heading into its match at Montreal on Saturday. Columbus is tied with Orlando City for second place in the Eastern Conference behind D.C. United.
Padres prospect Ashbeck named Bradley U’s Outstanding Male Athlete
While beginning his professional baseball career with the San Diego Padres organization, Marshfield High School graduate Elliot Ashbeck picked up another honor from Bradley University.
Ashbeck, who graduated from Bradley in May, was named the Bradley Varsity Club Most Outstanding Male Athlete, based on votes of Bradley coaches and staff, local media, and fans.
Ashbeck, also the Bradley baseball team’s most valuable player, was a top-10 finalist for the national John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year Award after helping the Braves to their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1968.
Ashbeck was 11-5 with a 3.55 ERA as a pitcher and also hit .264 with 13 doubles and tied for the team-high in RBIs with 31.
Ashbeck, a 2012 Marshfield graduate, was drafted in the 16th round of the Major League Baseball draft by the San Diego Padres in June and soon after signed a contract and began his career with the Padres’ Arizona Rookie League team.
Through Monday, Ashbeck had pitched in four games for the Arizona Rookie League Padres. He has allowed four runs — two earned — in 5 2/3 innings with five strikeouts, one walk, and a save.
Zimmermann shuts down Giants
Jordan Zimmermann, a 2004 Auburndale High School graduate and former player at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, is off to a 7-5 start this season with MLB’s Washington Nationals.
Zimmermann allowed one run in seven innings to earn the win, a 3-1 victory over the World Champion San Francisco Giants on July 5.
He has a team-high 17 starts this season with a 3.04 ERA. He has 77 strikeouts and 20 walks in 106 2/3 innings for the Nationals, who were 46-38 and in first place in the National League East Division through Tuesday.
Zimmermann is scheduled to start again Saturday at Baltimore before the league hits its all-star break next week.
Paul Lecker is publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com, a contributor to Hub City Times Sports. You can reach him by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.