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Northwoods League celebrates over one million fans for second straight year.

Fresh off the Big League Dreams Showcase, Wednesday night's action was highlighted by the news of the Northwoods League totaling over one million fans league-wide for the second year in a row. St. Cloud swept Rochester in a battle between two future playoff teams in the North, while Green Bay handed Kenosha two consecutive losses at home, taking the series. Madison remained hot, winning their fifth consecutive contest and routing Alexandria. 

 

Lakeshore 2, Battle Creek 0

The Chinooks received a stellar outing from their starter Joe Stoll (Ohio State), while their staff held the Bombers lineup to just three hits, taking the series split at home. Toeing the rubber in a rare starting position, Stoll threw seven scoreless innings, giving up three hits, while striking out a season-high eight batters, moving to 2-3 on the year. Lakeshore’s 1st baseman Doug Kraeger (Richmond) supplied the offensive spark in the game, going 2-for-3 with an RBI, while scoring once. Battle Creek did not have much to pride themselves on, losing their 20th game of the second half, but outfielder Dan Swain (Siena) built upon his solid Major League Dreams Showcase, going 1-for-4 with a stolen base.

Wisconsin 7, Wisconsin Rapids 4

After scoring five runs in the 4th inning, the Woodchucks left no doubt in taking the series finale at Athletic Park, splitting the four game series at two games apiece. Ryan Day (Duke) served up the game-changing hit, slugging a grand slam in the 4th, his first home run of the year, while catcher Mason Fishback (New Mexico State) added two hits and two runs, while hitting a solo bomb, his fourth of 2015. Reliever Jameson Lavery (UW-La Crosse) picked up his first win, entering out of the bullpen in the 5th inning, throwing three shut out innings, giving up a pair of hits and striking out three. Rafters’ catcher Bryce Jordan (LSU) and 2nd baseman Ernie Clement (Virginia) each recorded three hits in the loss, as Wisconsin Rapids fell to 15-17 in the second half.

Duluth 5, Eau Claire 2

Duluth snapped their mini three game losing streak with three runs in the 7th inning, taking game two of their road series against Eau Claire. Elliott Barzilli (TCU) carried the playoff bound Huskies to victory, going 2-for-5 with his first home run, driving in three RBIs. Starter Mitchell Bauer (Minnesota State Mankato) became victorious in his fifth consecutive start, giving five innings, giving up a run on five hits and striking out three. Express right fielder Tyler Adkison (San Diego State) knocked in his team-leading 26th RBI, while scoring once and drawing a walk, as Eau Claire dropped their 18th game of the second stanza, sitting in 6th place amongst the North.

Willmar 6, Mankato 3

Exploding for six runs in the 8th inning, the Stingers earned the series split in Mankato, stealing the finale against Mankato and improving to 20-13. Willmar’s 2nd baseman Brian Pruett (Florida Gulf Coast) provided the big hit, recording a three-run double in the comeback 8th, leading his team to victory. Zach Strecker (Kentucky) continued to stay one of the hottest pitchers in the league, collecting a win in his fifth straight appearance, going seven innings, allowing a run on four hits and fanning four batters, tying a league-best mark with his seventh win. Mankato’s leadoff man Mikel Mucha (Wichita State) totaled three hits a top the lineup, pushing his batting average to .304 on the season, while Mankato has cemented themselves in 8th place in their division.

St. Cloud 3, Rochester 1

The Rox scored all of their runs by the first three innings, holding on to edge the streaking Honkers and winning their fourth straight game. St. Cloud’s Austin Athmann (Minnesota) and Connor Crane (McNeese State) both recorded home runs on the night, being responsible for all of their team’s runs. Starter Ryan Kokora (Paradise Valley C.C.) tossed five scoreless innings, giving up three hits and striking out a half-dozen batters, winning his first game of the season. Rochester’s shortstop Adam Walton (Illinois) extended his hit streak to five games, providing the only ounce of offense on the night, as the Honkers dropped both games of their home series.

Thunder Bay 7, Waterloo 4

Thunder Bay used a consistent offensive attack, as they coasted to the series sweep and advanced their win streak to four. Dan Rizzie (Xavier) won Player of the Night honors, pushing his hit-streak to a league-best 21 games, going 2-for-3 with a pair of doubles and four RBIs, while leadoff man Jared James (Long Beach State) took back the batting title, adding three hits and now owns the league-lead for average with .367. Starter Kyle Von Ruden (Hawaii) let up four runs over eight innings of work, giving up six hits and punching out three batters, improving to 3-4. The Bucks were led tonight by Tim Millard (Dallas Baptist), extending his hit streak to eight games, while knocking in a pair of runs, as Waterloo has now set a season-record for losing streak, as they have no lost their last eleven contests.

Madison 10, Alexandria 3

Scoring five runs in the 4th and 7th inning, the Mallards swept their interleague doubleheader against the Blue Anchors, en route to their fifth consecutive victory. Chris Tschida (Western Illinois) charged his offense with a pair of hits, runs, and recording an RBI, while leadoff man Matt McCann (Farleigh Dickinson) drove in a pair of RBIs out of the top spot. Making his starting debut, Madison’s Brandon White (South Suburban C.C.) registered his first win, going five innings, surrendering three runs on six hits and striking out five batters. Alexandria’s Jake Merrigan (North Carolina) and Trooper Reynolds (Dallas Baptist) each went 2-for-4 with an RBI in the loss, as their team fell a game behind .500 for the second half at 16-17.

Kalamazoo 6, La Crosse 1

Kalamazoo received an outstanding night from their pitching staff, holding one of the most potent offenses in the league to just one run and handing the Loggers an upset loss at home. Starter Alex Kuisel (Academy of Art) won his third game of the year, giving 5 2/3 innings, allowing a run on seven hits and striking out a pair of batters. Growlers’ leadoff man Angelo Armenta (USC) provided a three-run double in the 9th inning, putting the game out of reach in thee final frame. La Crosse’s Mason McCoy (Illinois Central) added another hit to his league-leading 106 total, drawing two walks, while the Loggers remain in 3rd place in the second half, owning a 19-14 record.

Green Bay 7, Kenosha 4

The Bullfrogs never trailed throughout the entire series finale, taking the rare series sweep in Kenosha, making a statement with their third straight win. Logan Taylor (Louisville) gave his team a terrific effort out of the leadoff spot, going 3-for-5 with three RBIs and scoring twice. Green Bay starter Sam Brunner (Dayton) turned in another quality start, tossing 6 1/3 innings, surrendering a pair of runs on seven hits and struck out two, advancing his record to 6-3. Kingfish 3rd baseman John Brodner (Wright State) gave a solid night out of the nine hole for his team, giving a pair of hits and RBIs in the loss, however Kenosha still holds the best record throughout the league and remains 2 ½ games ahead of Madison for the second half.

 

Thursday’s Schedule

Waterloo @ Rochester 7:05 PM

Eau Claire @ Alexandria 7:05 PM

Duluth @ Willmar 7:05 PM

Mankato @ St. Cloud 7:05 PM

La Crosse @ Green Bay 7:05 PM

Lakeshore @ Wisconsin 7:05 PM

Battle Creek @ Madison 7:05 PM

Kalamazoo @ Kenosha 7:05 PM

Thunder Bay @ Wisconsin Rapids 7:05 PM