Thunder Bay and Madison to Meet for Title
Both Thunder Bay and Madison swept their best-of-three divisional series Wednesday with a home victory. Thunder Bay scored three runs in the ninth for a dramatic 4-3 win over Mankato. Madison exploded in the middle innings for a 14-5 victory against Wisconsin.
Ryan Terry (Monmouth) was the star of the game for Thunder Bay, first homering in the eighth inning to bring the Border Cats deficit to 3-1. In the ninth, he drove in a run with a single to make it 3-2. The next batter Connor Lind (Furman) reached on an infield single on a high chopper to MoonDog shortstop Bobby Munoz (Saint Leo). Munoz muffed the ball and then threw it away on a last moment effort to get Lind out a first, which would have ended the game. Instead Terry came all the way around, scoring from first, and ended the game in the Border Cats favor. Jimmy Reyes (Elon) struck out 11 for Mankato in 7.1 innings on the hill. He allowed just four hits and one run. Mike Lobacz (Elon) hit a two-run home run in the sixth inning for Mankato.
Wisconsin took the first lead in the game at Madison, 1-0 in the second inning, but Madison struck quickly and often to pull away in this one. Drew Martin (NC State) hit a two-run homer in the second. Luke Stewart (Alabama-Birmingham) launched a solo homer in the fourth, his second of the series, to give the Mallards a 4-2 lead. After Wisconsin brought their deficit to 5-4 in the sixth inning the Mallards put six runs on the board in the bottom of the frame to take an 11-4 lead. It was a very balanced attack by Madison with four players scoring at least two runs and four players driving in exactly two runs. Aaron Bray (Charlotte) scored three times out of the leadoff spot and was the only Mallard with three hits in the game; they totaled 15 hits as a team. A three-run seventh inning completed the scoring at 14-5.
NWL Championship Series Schedule
Thunder Bay at Madison, Friday, 7:05 PM Central
Madison at Thunder Bay, Saturday, 7:05 PM Eastern
Madison at Thunder Bay, Sunday, 7:05 PM Eastern, if necessary