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Chinooks advance, Stingers force Game 3

Lakeshore advanced to the Summer Collegiate World Series with a 2-1 win over Wisconsin, picking up a series sweep of the Woodchucks. They await the winner of Willmar-Mankato, as the Stingers used a two-run third to force a Game 3 with a 3-2 win over the MoonDogs.

Lakeshore 2, Wisconsin 1 (10 innings)

A night removed from hitting a big grand slam in the top of the ninth for Lakeshore, catcher Zack Bowers (Georgia) won it for the Chinooks again with a walkoff single in the bottom of the 10th. Bowers finished with five RBIs in the sweep of Wisconsin to advance to the Summer Collegiate World Series. 

Bowers hit brought home teammate Kyle Wood (Purdue) from third with his single to win it. Wood had a big game, going 4-5 and scoring both runs- but Lakeshore struggled to convert opportunities early, stranding 13 runners on base. They led 1-0 through six, as starter Shaun Anderson (Florida) was dealing. He gave up the tying run in the seventh, but ended up coming within one out of all nine innings. He finished with five strikeouts and issued a lone walk. 

He gave way to Sterling Koerner (FGCU) after he loaded the bases with two outs, and Koerner got a big flyout to end the threat. Lakeshore loaded the bases in the bottom of the ninth, all on walks from Woodchuck reliever Austin Tribby (Missouri). However, Tribby got a clutch called strike three to escape the jam. 

Koerner returned for the 10th and struck out the side to pick up the win, as Bowers drove in the winning run off of reliever Blair Beck (Kansas) to end the Woodchucks season. The Chinooks get a day off and await the winner of Mankato-Willmar for who they'll face in the Summer Collegiate World Series. 

Willmar 3, Mankato 2

Willmar bounced back from losing Game 1, downing the MoonDogs, 3-2, to force a Game 3 in the Northern Division finals. The Stingers struck for two runs in the third, bouncing back from an early 2-1 deficit to go on and win. Willmar's duo of starter AJ Puckett (Pepperdine) and Matt Geislinger (MSU-Mankato) combined to allow just three hits and Mankato was held scoreless- and hitless over the final six innings.

Puckett went six innings in a quality start, allowing just two runs- only one of which was earned- while striking out just seven. He gave way to Geislinger, who threw three no-hit innings, allowing just one baserunner while facing the minimum. He also struck out four, including the last MoonDog to extend the series.

The Stingers got just enough offense from a RBI double from Frankie Rios (Southern California), a single from Max Ayoub (Nebraska Kearney) and a sacrifice fly from Brian Pruett (FGCU). Levi Scott (UT-Arlington) was the lone MoonDog to record a RBI, also coming on a sacrifice fly. 

Austin Warner (Bellarmine) turned in four dominant innings in relief for the MoonDogs, striking out three while issuing a lone walk, the only baserunner to reach against him. The series resumes on Wednesday night in Willmar.

Wednesday's Schedule:

Mankato at Willmar, 7:05 p.m.