Stellar pitching performances lead to battle a top the North.
Wednesday night's action saw two impressive win streaks come to an end as La Crosse and Duluth both fell into the loss column. Kenosha continued their hot streak as they swept the Kalamazoo Growlers on the road. Alexandria ended their seven game losing streak defeating the Mankato Moondogs for their third victory of 2015.
Kenosha 12, Kalamazoo 8
The South-leading Kingfish jumped out to a 11-0 lead, and took care of the Growlers on the road, as they have now pushed their win streak to seven games. A trio of Kenosha batters registered home runs as Hunter Alexander (St. Johns River State) and Andrew Brahier (UW-Oshkosh) hit their second home runs of the season, while Zach Ratcliff (Ohio State) recorded his first. Kingfish starter Ryne Blanton (Madison College) did not have his best night off the mound, but did just enough to pick up his first victory as he threw five innings, giving up four runs on eight hits. Kalamazoo Shortstop Charles LeBlanc (Pittsburgh) had a solid night at the plate going 2-for-3 with two RBIs, as the Growlers now own a 4-12 record.
St. Cloud 4, Duluth 3
St. Cloud battled back from a 3-1 deficit, scoring three runs in the 9th inning as they ended the Huskies seven game win streak, pulling to within 1 ½ games of first place. Rox Shortstop Jake Farr (Tennessee Tech) contributed the game winning hit, as his RBI single was the difference in the contest. Rox reliever Brett DeGagne (North Dakota) picked up his first win of the year as he pitched the 7th and 8th innings giving up a run on three hits and struck out one. Duluth Catcher Dominic Miroglio (San Francisco) registered three hits on the night, boosting his batting average to .371, as the Huskies still remain the North Division leaders by a half game.
Battle Creek 7, Wisconsin 2
The Bombers moved to 7-8 on the season as they split their road series between the Woodchucks. Battle Creek Center Fielder Dan Swain (Siena) was terrific in the leadoff spot, going 4-for-5, smashing his second home run of the year, while picking up three RBIs. Starter Min Hsia (Taiwan) relayed a strong outing for the Bombers as he went six innings, allowing a run on seven hits, and struck out four, improving to 1-1 on the season. Woodchucks 3rd Baseman Ramsey Romano (Michigan) was impressive tonight going 2-for-2 with an RBI double, as Wisconsin now sits in 8th place in the South Division.
Thunder Bay 5, Waterloo 2
The Border Cats scored five runs in the 6th inning as they earned the series split against Waterloo as the battle for first place in the North narrows within five teams. Thunder Bay pitcher Julian Loret de Mola (Nova Southeastern) picked up his first victory of the season needing just 5 1/3 innings, allowing an earned run on three hits and struck out three. Waterloo leadoff man Luke Stratman (Lamar C.C.) registered two hits on the night, as he recorded five hits in the series, as Waterloo is in a three-way tie for second place.
Alexandria 8, Mankato 1
Alexandria collected their third win of the season as they went into Mankato and split the series. Blue Anchors 1st Baseman Ricky Sanchez (Notre Dame) hit his third home run of the season, as he finished with four RBIs on the night. A pair of North Dakota State Bison were spectacular off the mound tonight as starter Sean Terres was spectacular tonight, tossing six innings, giving up no earned runs and struck out six batters, while Blake Stockert pitched the other three innings, giving up three hits and struck out two, as he has now picked up a save in every one of Alexandria’s victories. Mankato Shortstop Craig Nenning (Ohio State) provided the only offense as he went 2-for-3 with an RBI, as Mankato has now fallen to 6-9 in the first half.
Wisconsin Rapids 7, La Crosse 4
Wisconsin Rapids bats heated up in the late innings as they defeated La Crosse, ending the Loggers impressive win streak. Led by outfielder Jake Sandlin’s (Georgia College) two hits and .413 batting average, the Rafters advanced to 7-8 for the year. Reliever Jake Johansmeier (Eastern Illinois) tossed 4 1/3 innings, only giving up one earned run, and picked up his third victory, tying a league high for wins. Loggers Left Fielder Grant Fennell (Nevada) swung a hot stick going 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI, as La Crosse remains in second place in the South.
Green Bay 5, Madison 2
The Bullfrogs opened out to a 5-0 lead, and coasted to victory as they split their series against the Mallards in Madison. Green Bay 1st Baseman Paul Jacobson (South Dakota State) hit a solo home run, and finished with three hits on the night as he carried the offense. Starter Luke Crabb (Dodge City C.C.) improved to 1-1 as he went six innings, giving up an earned run on two hits and struck out two. Mallards 2nd Baseman J.J. Gould (Jacksonville) supplied the offense, going 1-for-2 with an RBI, as Madison now owns an 8-7 record, which is tied for third in the South Division.
Rochester 4, Willmar 2
Rochester scored two runs in the 8th inning, as they needed some late-inning heroics to pull off a road victory at Willmar, pulling within a half game of Duluth in the North Division. Honkers Center Fielder Alex Shultz (Nebraska-Omaha) was perfect at the plate getting on base in all four at-bats, with three hits and a walk. Reliever Spencer Greer (Dixie State) was lights out coming out of the bullpen as he pitched the last three innings and did not surrender a run, and picked up his first victory of the season. Stingers Center Fielder Sean Beesley (Illinois State) swung a strong bat tonight as he went 2-for-4 as Willmar fell to 7-7.
Alexandria @ Rochester 6:05/8:05 PM (Doubleheader)
Thunder Bay @ Eau Claire 6:35 PM
St. Cloud @ Willmar 7:05 PM
Lakeshore @ Madison 7:05 PM
Kenosha @ La Crosse 7:05 PM
Battle Creek @ Wisconsin Rapids 7:05 PM
Green Bay @ Wisconsin 7:05 PM
Duluth @ Mankato 7:05 PM
Waterloo @ Kalamazoo 7:05 PM