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Published On: August 16th, 2023

2023 Woodchucks Season Review: 30 Seasons Up, 30 Seasons Down

By Will Charlton; Broadcasting and Media Relations Intern

In what was a roller coaster of a summer, the 30th season for the Wausau Woodchucks has concluded.

Highlighted by win streaks and losing streaks, a brand new coaching staff, and five All Stars, Wausau finished with a 35-37 overall record and fourth in the Great Lakes West.

First year field manager Brock Moss took over for Corey Thompson – the second most winningest manager manager in team history (82 wins in two seasons) – and nearly captured a first-half title, only missing out by a half game.

Moss had to leave the team following the all star break, which gave duties to acting manager Ross Davis, who was pitching coach prior.

Wausau finished with six guys batting over .300, two of them being All Stars Dalton Pearson (Cincinnati) and Colin Brueggemann (Oklahoma State), and another being returning player Brent Widder (Evansville). Andrew Jimenez (Wisconsin-Milwaukee) – one of the better second-half players – finished on a 10-game hit streak, batting .313.

The team would also finish sixth in the league in hits (635) and third in doubles (128). 

Pearson led the team in hits at 56, followed by fellow All Star Jesse Donohoe (Georgia State) who had 55, Mr. Woodchuck of this past season Michael Maginnis (Georgia State) – who played for the team the whole summer – with 51, and Brueggemann who had 46.

Brueggemann led the team in doubles with 15, Pearson had 14, and then Donohoe would be the only other player to have 10 or more with his 10.

Pearson was tied for the most home runs on the team with Drew Berkland (Minnesota) and returner Mark Shallenberger (Evansville), who all had five.

Pearson, Brueggemann and Donohoe were also named Postseason All Stars.

Top Moments

Home Opener and First Win (5/30): After losing the opener on Memorial Day 7-0 to Madison, Wausau followed that up with a 6-2 win, a game where they got down early 2-0 and scored the final six runs. Alex Breckheimer (Bryant & Stratton (WI)), picked up his first win and tossed five and a third scoreless innings.

26 Runs and a Sweep (5/31+6/1): Wausau welcomed in Lakeshore for the first and second times of the season, picking up wins of 11-5 and 15-11 in a two-game sweep. This gave Wausau a three-game win streak at the time.

Rockers Get Rocked (6/2+3): A couple of games in Ashwaubenon against the then 4-0 Rockers was a matchup of the two-best teams in the division at the time, and the Woodchucks picked up wins in back-to-back nights of 7-4 and 8-4. Wausau then rode a five-game win streak into a new series with the Dock Spiders.

Combined No-Hitter (6/4): This was a special day. Starting pitcher Ethan Pecko (Towson) went seven full innings on the mound, striking out 11 against Fond du Lac and only allowing one base runner in the fifth (walk). He went one-two-three in six of his seven innings before being taken out due to pitch count. The Dock Spiders scored a run from a walk with bases loaded in the eighth, but they would not record a hit in the game. This was the sixth-straight win for Wausau before the win streak would end the next night.

Wausau Breaks Three-Game Skid with Sweep of Madison (6/8+9): After losses to Fond du Lac and two to Wisconsin Rapids, Wausau found themselves in the win column again, taking the first of two wins this season at Warner Park. This was the first extra-inning game of the season, and due to Jake English’s (Kansas) 10th inning three-run home run in his Wausau debut, the Woodchucks prevailed 6-4. They would also come back the next night at Athletic Park and improve to 3-1 at that point against the Mallards with a 5-2 win.

Woodchucks Score Eight in Eighth, Beat Rockford 12-1 (6/15): This was a low-scoring game until it wasn’t. With a somewhat comfortable lead of 4-1, Wausau decided to add a little insurance, posting what would end up being tied for the most runs in an inning this season. Eight runs in the eighth inning, highlighted from two different Jacob Schroeder (Illinois) RBI singles, propelled the Woodchucks to a 12-1 win. Travis Lutz (Bradley) picked up his first win on the mound as well, going five innings and striking out four while only allowing one run.

Wausau Walk-Off Winner, Doubleheader Sweep of Madison (6/21): The Woodchucks had a great day of baseball at Athletic Park, picking up wins of 14-8 and 8-7 over the Mallards. Game one was highlighted by Berkland’s 3/5 performance, which included a home run and five RBIs. Game two was a surging comeback win and the first walk off, as three runs in the ninth down 7-4 forced extras, and Pearson would be the hero in the tenth. His RBI single with two outs and an 0-2 count won Wausau the game 8-7.

Chucks Head East (6/22-27): A six-game road trip started with two against Lakeshore down in Mequon, games Wausau would split. The next stop was Kokomo, where Wausau would fall in game one but respond very well in game two. A 6-2 win was highlighted by Brian Reinke’s (Richmond) three amazing relief innings on the mound – picking up the win and striking out seven. The road trip ended in Battle Creek, where the teams would only play one game – a game Wausau won 7-5 in the tenth. The second game got postponed to July 18 due to air quality.

Wausau Shuts Out Green Bay 14-0 (6/28): The first game back home after the road trip was a great one, as Wausau picked up their first shutout win of the season. Evansville teammates Widder (4) and Simon Scherry (3) combined for seven hits and each had a double. Pearson had four RBIs and a home run in the game.

First Half Ends with Win over Lakeshore (7/3): Wausau ended the first half with an 8-4 win over Lakeshore down in Mequon. All-Star pitcher Nate Nabholz (Towson) got the win, going six full innings and striking out six. This gave Wausau its 20th win of the first half, but they would finish a half game behind Green Bay (21-15).

Wausau Scores 16 to Win First Game of Second Half (7/5): An early 8-0 lead led Wausau to a 16-8 win over Fond du Lac. In only his second game back, Shallenberger hit two home runs as part of a 3/6 game and also had five RBIs. Also hitting home runs in the game were Maginnis and English.

Season-High 18 Runs Leads to Win Over Green Bay (7/10): All 18 runs were scored in the first four innings, highlighted by eight in the third. The Chucks once again hit four home runs in the game, two being by Donohoe in his first two at bats and the others being hit by Brennan Holt (Oklahoma State) and Shallenberger. Wausau also had a season high 21 hits in the win, and the key thing about this game is that it was called after seven innings due to rain.

Widder Goes 5/6 in 9-1 Win Over Dock Spiders (7/12): The most hits by a single player in a game this season, as Widder went off, with two of the five hits being doubles. Starting pitcher Matt Milner (SW Oklahoma St.) went five innings and got the win while only allowing one hit. Brueggemann would hit a home run as well, the only Wausau home run this season at Herr-Baker Field. This was also a day where Wausau played Fond du Lac in a doubleheader, and lost game one 6-1. 

Back-to-Back Walk-Off Wins Over Lakeshore (7/13+14): These were two of the most exciting games of the second half, as Wausau won in walk-off fashion back-to-back nights. Wausau entered the eighth of the first game down 7-3, and a four-run inning highlighted by a Brueggemann three-RBI double tied the game. Then with two outs and the winning run at third, a Lakeshore error in left field won Wausau the game. The next night, Wausau trailed 3-1 into the ninth, and a three-run inning capped off by the winning two-RBI double from Donohoe got the job done.

Chucks Head to Traverse City for All Star Game (7/25): Pearson, Donohoe, Brueggemann, Nabholz and Cole Hentschel (Richmond) all played in this season’s Great Lakes All Star Game. Pearson was 3/5 (double and an RBI), Brueggemann was 1/2 with a double and two RBIs, and Donohoe was also 1/2. Then on the mound, Nabholz and Hentschel each went two thirds of an inning and had a strikeout. The West won the game 11-7.

Wausau Breaks Nine-Game Losing Streak in Madison (8/3): After being winless in exactly two weeks, Wausau finally found themselves in the win column as they beat Madison 14-6 at Warner Park. In a game where Wausau went down after the first 6-0, they would not allow the Mallards to score again. The Woodchucks scored 14 unanswered, highlighted by the seven-run sixth inning that started with Shallenberger tying the game with a three-run home run.

Woodchucks Sweep Doubleheader at Witter Field (8/5): The pitching was on point, leading the Woodchucks to wins of 3-2 and 5-3. In game one, Henry Cone (McClennan (TX)) went 7.1 innings and got the win. Garrett Lott (Bossier Parish (LA)) got the save, picking up four strikeouts in the final five outs. Then in game two when Wausau led 4-3, Carson Richter (Edgewood College) hit an RBI single to give the Woodchucks a little support before closing the game in the seventh (seven-inning game).

Wausau Sweeps Home and Home Against Fond du Lac (8/7+8): This was the start of the final win streak of the season, as in back to back nights Wausau scored 11 runs. The first game was the final win at home, as the Woodchucks scored five unanswered after being tied at six to win 11-6. And speaking of unanswered runs, the next night at Herr-Baker Field Wausau trailed 4-2 into the seventh, but would score the last nine to win 11-4.

Looking Ahead

Thank you to all players, coaches and fans for a great 2023 summer, and we already look forward to next summer!

Be sure to lookout for the 2024 schedule release later this year, and make sure to follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and TikTok to stay up to date on the Chucks during the offseason.

For questions or more information, visit or call us at 715-845-5055.