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Anchors blow 5-run lead to Mallards

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Madison, Wis. – The Alexandria Blue Anchors fell to the Madison Mallards Monday Night 6-5 at Warner Park.  They are now 16-16 in the second half and 28-39 on the season.

The Blue Anchors were quick to score in the first inning.  Steve Sada singled to start the ballgame and stole second base.  On a single from Dane Hutcheon, Sada went to third.  Josh Merrigan stepped up to the plate and hit a double scoring Sada.  The hits continued as Ricky Sanchez knocked in Hutcheon.  With runners on the corners, Trooper Reynolds singled home Merrigan.  A wild pitch put Sanchez on third and Reynolds on second.  Duce hit a sacrifice fly to score Sanchez making the score 5-0.  The sixth hit of the inning, this time by Matt Hopfner, scored Reynolds for the sixth run of the inning.  

The Mallards were able to climb back in the game in their half of the first against Jake Matthys.  Ro Coleman reached on an error and Matt McCann replaced him as a pinch runner.  Anthony Gonsolin then singled.  After a strikeout, Jason Goldstein brought him McCann for the first Mallards run.  Cameron Frost then hit a double scoring Gonsolin to make it a 5-2 Blue Anchors lead.

Madison chipped away again in the fourth.  Goldstein started the inning with a single and J.J. Gould got a one-out single.  A walk to Jonathan Quintana loaded the bases.  Matthys struck out the next batter but gave up an RBI single to Charlie Cody making the score 5-3 in the Anchors’ favor. 

Graylon Brown came in relief and in the sixth Madison got back on the board.  Quintana walked with one out and he stole second and an error by the shortstop allowed him to reach third.  Bryce Carter walked and Cody reached on catcher’s interference to load the bases.  A wild pitch with McCann at the plate allowed Carter to score to tie the game at five.  

In the bottom of the eighth, the Mallards got an unearned run to take the lead.  Quintana tripled to right field but the ball was misplayed by allowing Quintana to score and Madison completed the comeback 6-5.

Matthys pitched the first four innings allowing three runs, two earned, on six hits and a walk and a season-high seven strikeouts.  Brown (2-5) got the loss pitching four frames surrendering three runs, one earned, on three hits and three walks while punching out four batters.  

Minnesota Baseball Academy Player of the Game – Ricky Sanchez (1B) – The Blue Anchors All-Star first baseman went 3-for-4 at the plate scoring a run and collecting an RBI.  He added a walk as well and his season average is now .327.

Notes: The Blue Anchors have an off day tomorrow for the Northwoods League Big League Dreams Showcase which is hosted in Madison…The Anchors have two pitchers in the game (Max Knutson and Zach Muckenhirn) and five position players (Matt Duce, Ricky Sanchez, Steve Sada, Drew Fearing, and Nehwon Norkeh)…Field Manager Al Newman will help coach in the game…The Anchors return to the field on Wednesday against the Mallards…The game, starting at 7:05 pm, can be seen live at http://portal.stretchinternet.com/nwl.

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The Alexandria Blue Anchors are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 22nd season of summer collegiate baseball, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, more than 115 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (DET) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Lucas Duda (NYM) and Ben Zobrist (TB). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League YouTube channel. For more information, www.blueanchors.com.