Madison moves into second place in South, Rochester wins fifth straight.
Saturday night's action witnessed some teams beginning to cement themselves into playoff contention, as Madison took game one of their series opener against Wisconsin, moving into second place for the overall record in the South Division. Rochester extended their win streak to five games, shutting out Duluth for their 17th win of the second half. Kalamazoo has begun to flirt with Northwoods League history in a negative way, but restrained making it, as they walked off against Green Bay, handing the Bullfrogs a devastating loss.
Alexandria 9, Waterloo 8
The Blue Anchors jumped out to an early 4-0 lead, and held off a late push from the Waterloo offense, as they took the series opener by a slim margin, moving to .500 at 15-15. Ricky Sanchez (Notre Dame) carried his offense to victory, hitting a three-run home run, giving him eight on the season, and reaching his RBI total to 34. Reliever Eric White (Dallas Baptist) pitched just one inning of relief, collecting his third win and striking out a batter, while Tyler Hasper (Heartland C.C.) pitched the final two outs in the 9th inning, striking out both batters he faced, en route to his first save of the season. The Bucks dropped their eighth consecutive contest, but were led by Mikal Hill (Winston-Salem State), who had a terrific night, driving in three RBIs, while registering a pair of hits, and scoring once.
Lakeshore 13, La Crosse 7
Lakeshore dominated the Loggers early on, leading 13-1 after two innings, and cruised to their fourth straight win, taking game one against La Crosse on the road. Zarley Zalewski (Kent State) and Greg Deichmann (LSU) were the leaders offensively tonight, combining for seven RBIs, six hits, and four runs. All-Star Lake Bachar (UW-Whitewater) picked up his fifth win of 2015, hurling four innings of relief, striking out four, as he begins to adapt in his role coming out of the bullpen. Loggers’ 2nd baseman Will Savage (Columbia) provided a stellar night at the plate, adding three hits and two runs, while recording his first triple of the season, as La Crosse fell a game and a half behind Madison for the overall second place spot in the South Division.
Kenosha 11, Mankato 7
Taking game one of their cross-division opener, the Kingfish offense shined again, totaling thirteen hits and winning comfortably in Mankato, as they continue to boast the best overall record in 2015. John Brodner (Wright State) led his team’s offense for the second straight night, going 3-for-5, hitting his first home run of the season and driving in three RBIs. Starter P.J. Schuster Jr. (SIU-Edwardsville) collected his sixth win, tossing five innings, giving up two earned runs on five hits and striking out three. Mankato’s Craig Nennig (Ohio State) enjoyed a solid night at the plate despite the loss, providing a pair of hits, runs, and slugging his fifth home run of the year, as the MoonDogs have fallen into a funk, losing their last five ballgames.
Madison 6, Wisconsin 1
Madison used a consistent approach from their offense, while receiving a terrific pitching performance as they edged Wisconsin and currently sit firmly in second place in the South. The Mallards were carried once again by the stars a top of their lineup as Logan Regnier (Central Michigan) went 2-for-4 with an RBI in the leadoff spot, followed by Anthony Gonsolin (St. Mary’s) and Jean Ramirez (Illinois State) each registering solo home runs. Andrew Beckwith (Coastal Carolina) collected another quality start, totaling seven innings of work, giving up a run on six hits, while striking out six, as he improved his 2015 mark to 3-2. The Woodchucks have really begun to decline as the 2015 season wraps up, losing their ninth consecutive game, however their All-Star catcher Albee Weiss (Cal State Northridge) added his 14th home run of the season, tying a league-high, as he supplied the only form of offense all night for his squad.
Thunder Bay 14, Eau Claire 5
The Border Cats lineup jumped all over the Eau Claire pitching Saturday night, finishing with a consistent fourteen runs on fourteen hits, rebounding back into the win column in the series opener. Mikael Mogues (Seton Hall) made some noise with the bat, hitting a grand slam, his second home run of the season, while Max Dutto (California) reached base three times, hitting his third bomb of 2015, and recording two walks. Fresh off his Pitcher of the Night performance, Jimmy Murphy entered out of the bullpen again, throwing 3 2/3 innings of relief, giving up just a run on five hits, picking up his second victory. Express designated hitter Austin Listi (Dallas Baptist) went 2-for-5, hitting his fourth home run, as he has now totaled a home run in each of his last three games, while driving in twelve RBIs in his last four contests.
Willmar 3, St. Cloud 0
In a battle between two North Division heavyweights, the Stingers took game one as they cooled down the Rox lineup and moved just 2 ½ games behind St. Cloud for the second half. Colton Boucher (Northern State) provided five scoreless innings, giving up just one hit and striking out five, earning his fourth win of the season, while star closer Brady Anderson (Florida Gulf Coast) picked up his league-high 17th save, as he has now converted successfully his last five save appearances. The Rox only recorded three hits on the night in the loss, leadoff man Marcus Carson (Kentucky) was responsible for two of them, as the Rox still hold the best record in their division, sitting at 22-8 for the second half.
Wisconsin Rapids 9, Battle Creek 4
The Rafters had a late surge of offense, scoring four runs in the top of the 9th, as they cruised to the game one victory, moving to 12-16. Brock Carpenter (Seattle) added two hits and two RBIs to his outstanding 2015 campaign, while leadoff man Zack Domingues (Long Beach State) was fantastic, getting on base four times with three hits and a walk, scoring three times. Starter Jack Riley (UConn) provided six innings of work, giving up three runs on seven hits, punching out five batters as the All-Star picked up his fifth win. Bombers’ left fielder Cayce Bredlau (Austin Peay) went 2-for-3 with an RBI and run scored in the loss, as Battle Creek’s six game win streak came to an end, sitting in 7th place at 12-18.
Kalamazoo 4, Green Bay 3
Kalamazoo broke out to a 3-0 lead after four innings, but the Bullfrogs came back to tie it in the 8th inning, however the Growlers walked off in the 9th inning due to a wild pitch as they won their fifteenth game of the year. With runners on both 2nd and 3rd base, the Green Bay pitched tossed a wild pitch past the catcher, allowing pinch runner Drew Farmer (Western Michigan) to cross home plate for the win. The Growlers’ middle infielders Angelo Armenta (USC) and Justin Fletcher (Northern Illinois) both provided four hits as they provided a solid 1,2 punch off the top of the lineup. Alex Kuisel (Academy of Art) entered with an out in the 8th inning and completed the final five outs, giving up just one hit and striking out a batter, and was rewarded with his second win due to the game-winner in the 9th. Bullfrogs’ outfielder Robb Paller (Columbia) provided a four-hit night in the loss, scoring twice, as his team fell back into .500 at 15-15.
Rochester 9, Duluth 0
The Honkers dominated the Huskies on both sides, as Ricky Delgado (San Joaquin Delta C.C.) shined over seven innings, leading Rochester to a critical series-opening win. Delgado earned Pitcher of the Night honors, tossing seven scoreless innings, allowing just four hits and struck out one, as he advanced to 3-1 on the year. Matt Fiedler (Minnesota) was spectacular out of the three hole tonight, going a perfect 5-for-5, knocking in two RBIs, while Scott Schreiber (Nebraska) crushed his second home run, rounding out the night with two hits and two runs. Huskies’ catcher Holden Cammack (Oral Roberts) was the only Duluth batter to record a multi-hit game, as his team fell to 18-11, watching their five game win streak come to an end.
Duluth @ Rochester 1:05 PM
Waterloo @ Alexandria 5:05 PM
Madison @ Wisconsin 5:05 PM
Green Bay @ Kalamazoo 5:05 PM
Lakeshore @ La Crosse 5:05 PM
Thunder Bay @ Eau Claire 5:05 PM
Willmar @ St. Cloud 5:05/7:05 PM (Doubleheader)
Wisconsin Rapids @ Battle Creek 6:05 PM
Kenosha @ Mankato 6:05 PM