WEST DES MOINES - Marshalltown suffered a pair of losses to Class 4A No. 5 West Des Moines Valley on Monday night, falling 7-4 and 4-2 in a CIML Iowa Conference baseball doubleheader.
After falling behind 4-0 in the opener, the Bobcats (12-13, 5-9) battled back to tie the game after three runs in the fourth and one in the fifth, but the Tigers (21-8, 11-3) responded with three runs in the home half of the frame to retake control.
"(Monday's) losses are especially disappointing because we had several opportunities in both games we didn't take adantage of," said MHS head coach Steve Hanson. "Against good teams it comes down to execution, and Valley simply did a better job in that department than we did."
MHS got three hits apiece from both Alex Thompson and Kyle Carnahan in the nightcap, but Valley's Brock Everett was able to keep the Bobcats to just one earned run in the game.
Tre Blackford took the game two loss, surrendering four runs (three earned) in four innings. Blake Judkins pitched two scoreless innings in relief without giving up a hit.
Austin Stephens hit a home run for the Tigers in game two while both Jake Pauley and Jake Plath both went deep in the opener.
Carnahan had a triple and RBI for MHS in game two while Judkins also drove in a run.
Colton Hanke took the loss for MHS in the opener, walking four and striking out two while allowing five runs in 4 1/3 innings of work. Paul Fienup had a trio of hits in the loss while Thompson drove in two runs.
MHS committed seven errors between the two games.
"As the season winds down we'll need to pitch it better, swing it more aggressively and play better defense in order to win games against quality competition," said Hanson.
"Our guys aren't happy about (Monday's) outcome," he added, "and they're smart enough to know that the only way to change outcomes is to work harder and get better when they have the chance."
The Bobcats host Mason City for a pair of league tests Thursday night starting at 5:30 p.m.