NEW ULM Coming into their Tomahawk East League game Sunday night at Johnson Park with the Springfield Tigers, the New Ulm Brewers held a four-game lead over the second-place Tigers in the National Division.
That lead is now a fat five games thanks to Brewer righthander Wade French.
French allowed just one hit - a two- out single in the top of the ninth inning to Jacob Menage - as the Brewers defeated the Tigers 6-0.
French struck out 11 and sat down 16 straight Springfield hitters before Menage's single. He walked just one and hit one while allowing just three Tigers baserunners.
Brandon Wilhelmi, who had a perfect game for the Tigers for 4 1/3 innings, took the loss for Springfield, which now has a season record of 12-7. He allowed four runs in 5 2/3 innings.
Garrett Fischer and Cory Ranweiler each had two hits for the Brewers, now 16-2. Fischer drove in two runs.
"Brady (Ranweiler, Brewer catcher) was calling a good game," said French. "I was just going with whatever he was calling, and it was working, Until that one batter."
French recorded strikeouts number 10 and 11 in the top of the ninth inning before he worked a 1-1 count to Menage who laced French's next pitch hard back at French with the ball getting by French and rolling into center field.
French then got the final out of the game on an infield groundout.
"I knew that I had a no-hitter going," he said. "I looked at the scoreboard quite a bit during the game but I tried not to think about it."
There was not much to look at on the scoreboard for either team for the first four 4 1/2 innings because both Wilhelmi and French had not allowed a hit. Wilhelmi did not allow a Brewer to reach base until the bottom of the fifth inning when French reached on a one-out throwing error by Tigers' third baseman Matt Vogel. Chris Peters followed with the first New Ulm hit of the game - a double to center field that scored a sliding French for a 1-0 lead.
Zach Hoffmann followed with a bloop single to right field before Wilhelmi issued a two-out walk to Landon Rewitzer to load the bases.
A Fischer double brought in both Peters and Hoffmann before a wild pitch scored Rewitzer for a 4-0 lead.
New Ulm added two more runs in the bottom of the eighth inning off reliever Christian Loomis on base hits from Fischer, Aaron Pfaff and Cory Ranweiler and two wild pitches.