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Pitching rules the night, low-run ballgames flood the league.

As new series openers went underway on Tuesday, pitching dominated the night as their as three teams were shutout by strong outings. Rochester and St. Cloud dropped their first games of the second half. Eau Claire picked up their first victory, while Kenosha absolutely dismantled the Chinooks, winning 16-0. 

 

Alexandria 1, St. Cloud 0

The Blue Anchors scored their only run in the 2nd inning, and received a dominant pitching performance from Zach Muckenhirn (North Dakota) as Alexandria handed the Rox their first loss of the second half. Muckenhim was lights out, tossing eight scoreless innings, allowing a pair of hits, and struck out six, earning his first victory of the season. Catcher Matt Duce (Dallas Baptist) supplied the game’s only offense, going 2-for-4 with an RBI single. Rox starter Reese Gregory (St. Cloud State) kept his team in striking distance, throwing seven innings, giving up just one run on four hits, while striking out eight, but received no help from his offense, as he dropped to 4-2 on the year.

Duluth 3, Waterloo 2

Duluth opened up their home series against the Bucks in walk off fashion, as Alex Greene’s (West Florida) seeing-eye single sparked the Huskies to their third victory. In addition to Greene’s heroics in the final frame, 2nd baseman Nick Valaika (UCLA) went 3-for-4 with two RBIs, in addition to crushing his first home run of the season. Reliever Austin Carpenter (North Alabama) picked up his second win of the season, extending his scoreless-innings streak total to an impressive nine innings over his last nine appearances. Waterloo’s leadoff man Tyler Selesky (Florida Gulf Coast) enjoyed another multi-hit contest, going 2-for-3 with a triple as his team fell to 3-4 in the new campaign.

La Crosse 2, Kalamazoo 1

The Loggers scored two runs in the 3rd inning, which proved to be just enough as they took their series opener against the visiting Growlers. Ronnie Gideon (Texas A&M) opened up the scoring with a solo shot, giving him his fourth of the season, while Jordan Zimmerman’s (Mesa C.C.) RBI single was the deciding factor, as he’s totaled 29 on the year. Starter Jack Ralston (UCLA) shut down the bewildered Kalamazoo lineup, tossing 6 1/3 innings, allowing a run on four hits, striking out six, winning his first game. Growlers’ starter Alec Byrd (Florida State) was terrific in the loss, going seven strong innings, giving up two runs on five hits, striking out a season-high eight, but received his second loss as his team fell to 3-6.

Green Bay 6, Battle Creek 5

After falling into a 5-0 hole after the 1st inning, the Bullfrogs had a valiant comeback, scoring two runs in the 9th inning and stealing a road win. Green Bay’s Brian Celsi (California) carried the offense, going 2-for-4 with a stellar five RBIs, giving him seven in his last two games. Closer Jeremy Graf (St. Petersburg) recorded his fourth-straight save, throwing a scoreless final inning, giving him eight saves on the season. Bombers’ 2nd baseman Christian Helsel (Penn State) went 1-for-5 with two RBIs, as Battle Creek faltered to an uninspiring 1-6 start to the second half.

Wisconsin Rapids 11, Wisconsin 2

The Rafters totaled sixteen hits on the night, overpowering Chucks’ pitching and taking the first game of their rivalry series. Rapids duo of Dustin Woodcock (SIU-Edwardsville) and Jake Sandlin (Georgia College) connected for six hits and five RBIs, as eight different Rafters batters recorded hits on the night. Starter Jay Peters (UW-Milwaukee) was supplied with a heavy number of run support and cruised to his first win, going six innings, surrendering a run on four hits, striking out an impressive ten batters. Wisconsin’s 3rd baseman Ty Black (Ohio) went 2-for-3 with an RBI as the Woodchucks have dropped their fourth straight game after starting 2-0 in the second half.

Eau Claire 6, Rochester 3

Eau Claire scored four runs in the 5th inning as they broke out of their slump to collect their first win of the new half. Express’ outfielder Tyler Adkison (San Diego State) lifted his team’s offense with a pair of hits and four RBIs, hitting his fifth home run of the year. Erich Uelmen (Cal Poly) turned in a solid effort off the mound, going five innings, allowing three runs on four hits, striking out batters, improving to 2-0. Honkers’ Joe DeRoche-Duffin (UConn) added a double and two RBIs, as Rochester dropped their first contest of the first half.

Thunder Bay 4, Mankato 0

The Border Cats received a terrific pitching performance from their starter Jeremy Charles (Hartford) as they blanked the MoonDogs in the series opener, winning their third game of the second half. Charles was terrific throughout, as he has not allowed a run in his last fourteen innings of work, giving up three hits and striking out four, collecting his fourth win. Border Cats’ 2nd baseman Max Dutto (California) enjoyed a terrific night in his Northwoods League debut, going 2-for-3 with two doubles and an RBI. Mankato’s Sulliam Rios-Reyes (Kirkwood C.C.) went 1-for-2 with a walk, as the MoonDogs dropped into eighth place with a 2-4 record.

Kenosha 16, Lakeshore 0

Kenosha totaled a season-high twenty-two, as they handed the biggest blowout of the season, shutting out the Chinooks in the series opener. Three different Kingfish batters recorded four-hit nights as Eric Filia (UCLA), Zach Weigel (Seton Hall), and Zach Ratcliff (Ohio State) combined for six RBIs and scored eight runs in the offensive explosion. Starter Rico Garcia (Hawaii-Pacific) notched his second consecutive victory, throwing 5 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing six hits and punching out five batters. Chinooks’ Doug Kraeger (Richmond) went 3-for-4 on the night, as Lakeshore’s win streak was halted at two, as the fell to 4-5 on the year.

Madison 8, Willmar 2

In the series opener of interleague play, the Mallards defeated the Northwoods League’s best team in Willmar, breaking out with a four-run 5th inning which broke the scoreless tie and led to their fourth victory. Anthony Gonsolin (St. Mary’s) continued his star-studded season, going 3-for-5 with a pair of home runs, tying a league-high with nine, knocking in four RBIs and scoring three times. The Mallards’ pitching staff two-headed the attack off the mound as Westin Wuethrich (Madison College) tossed the first five innings, picking up his second win, striking out four, while Hector Bueno (Arizona State) pitched the final four innings, giving up a run (none earned) and striking out five. Willmar’s Eddie Estrada (Minnesota) went 1-for-3 with an RBI and a walk as they faltered to 4-3 on the year, losing their third straight contest.

 

Wednesday’s Schedule

Lakeshore @ Kenosha 12:05 PM

Wisconsin Rapids @ Wisconsin 6:35 PM

Waterloo @ Duluth 6:35 PM

Kenosha @ Lakeshore 6:35 PM

Rochester @ Eau Claire 6:35 PM

Thunder Bay @ Mankato 7:05 PM

Alexandria @ St. Cloud 7:05 PM

Madison @ Willmar 7:05 PM

Kalamazoo @ La Crosse 7:05 PM

Green Bay @ Battle Creek 7:05 PM