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Offense runs rampant on Thursday night

Offensive fireworks were all across the Northwoods League as several teams squared off in slugfests. La Crosse down Kalamazoo 15-12, while Waterloo, Willmar and Madison coasted to wins. Nobody had a more resounding victory then Mankato, as the MoonDogs pummeled Rochester 19-3.  

Wisconsin 8, Duluth 5

A six-run fourth carried Wisconsin to an 8-5 win over Duluth, despite being out-hit 12-10. The Woodchucks capitalized on sloppy defensive play from the Huskies, as they committed five errors and just half of the runs were earned. Paul DeJong (illinois St) hit a solo home run, his league-leading 19th of the season while four other Wisconsin hitters recorded a RBI. Four errors by Duluth came in that six-run inning. Austin Tribby (Missouri) picked up his fifth save with a scoreless ninth.

La Crosse 15, Kalamazoo 12

In a monster offensive day for both teams, Kalamzoo out-hit the Loggers 17-11 but still manager to fall, 15-12. Despite a 4-5, four-RBI day from L.K. Thompson (Florida International), the Growlers took the loss as five different La Crosse members of the lineup drove in mutliple runs. Nash Knight (Dallas Baptist) and Brody Weiss (UC-Santa Barbara) both hit home runs in the win, while starter Connor Baits (UC-Santa Barbara) got the win despite allowing five earned runs over five innigns. 

Waterloo 10, Alexandria 2

Eric Veghlan (St. Thomas) struck out seven over five one-run innings and was backed by more then enough run support as the Bucks routed Alexandria, 10-2. Blake Berger (FGCU) hit a pair of home runs for Waterloo, and Will Sparks (Washington) added a shot on a 4-5 night. David Kerian (Illinois) added a solo blast as Bucks pitchers fanned 11 and stranded 13 Blue Anchors on base

Madison 13, Battle Creek 4

Madison racked up 17 hits and put up innings of four and five runs as they downed the Bombers, 13-4. Tony Butler (Virginia) went 2-5 with a pair of runs and a team-high four RBIs to back starter Rob McDonnell (Illinois), who pitched into the sixth. He picked up his second straight win and he struck out four over 5 1/3 innings and allowed just two runs. Will Krug (Illinois) and Matt Thaiss (Virginia) both drove in a pair of runs.

Kenosha 3, Green Bay 2

Kenosha kept up with Wisconsin in the hunt for the second playoff spot as they downed Green Bay, 3-2. Roberto Baroniel (Nova Southeastern) took a tough loss for the Bullfrogs, as he struck out a season-high 11 and didn't allow an earned run over seven innings. Green Bay jumped ahead 2-0, but a two-out error by the shortstop allowed Taylor Douglas (Tennessee-Martin) to hit a three-run blast that was the difference. Paul Schuster (SIUE) turned in three shutout innings and struck out six while not allowing a hit for his 10th hit of the season. 

Willmar 11, Eau Claire 6

Willmar tacked on five runs in the top of the ninth to break open a 6-6 tie and down the Express, 11-6. Eau Claire kicked and booted the ball around the field, committing eight errors as many of the runs were unearned. Reagan Fowler (Creighton) drove in two runs for the Stingers and they captialized on the defensive miscues- fiver were on attempts to catch base stealers. Matt Geislinger (MSU-Mankato) threw a scoreless innings and a third for the win. 

Wisconsin Rapids 6, Lakeshore 1

The Rafters jumped ahead 4-0 and didn't look back, as the second-to-last Wisconsin Rapids downed the first place Chinooks. Zack Domingues (Long Beach St) and Kirby McGuire (New Mexico) both drove in two runs in the 1-2 spots at the top of the lineup. Jake Cage (Azusa Pacific) went eight innings for the second consecutive start, allowing just one run while striking out three and not issuing a walk for his fourth win.

Mankato 19, Rochester 3

15 different position players got up to bat as the MoonDogs routed Rochester, 19-3 behidn 18 hits and a pair of huge innings- eight and six runs. Peter Maris (UC Santa Barbara) went 3-5 with five RBIs while teammate Dalton DeLeon (UT Arlington) added a three-run home run. Starter Austin Warner (Bellarmine) went five innings for back-to-back starts, allowing just two runs while striking out three in just his fourth start of the season. He was backed by another four Mankato hitters who drove in a pair of runs.

Thunder Bay 7, St. Cloud 6

An early 6-1 lead was nearly not enough for Thunder Bay, but they hung on and tacked on a late insurance run in the top of the ninth to pick up a 7-6 win. St. Cloud struggled to hit with runners on base, as they stranded 11 players on and excellent production from the 3-4-5 spot in their lineup- two RBIs apiece- wasn't enough. Nathan Aultman (Northwestern St) pitched into the sixth and overcame a four-run fifth to pick up his first win of the season in his second start of the season.

Friday's Schedule (all games at 7:05 unless otherwise noted):
Wisconsin at Duluth (6:35)
Willmar at Eau Claire
Madison at Battle Creek
Waterloo at Alexandria
Kenosha at Green Bay
Lakeshore at Wisconsin Rapids
Thunder Bay at St. Cloud
Rochester at Mankato
La Crosse at Kalamazoo