Friday night's action of the Northwoods League featured several thrilling games with teams coming back from sizable deficits, including Kenosha, who rallied back from 11 runs down to tie the game. The Madison and Wisconsin Rapids game was called early after five innings because of weather. Green Bay and Battle Creek made it to the third inning before the game was suspended, and the game will be finished in a doubleheader tomorrow beginning at 4 p.m. Game 1 will begin where it left off in the third and go nine innings, while the second game will be a seven-inning contest.
Duluth 7, Willmar 6
After opening up a 7-2 lead after seven innings, the Duluth Huskies held on to defeat the Willmar Stingers 7-6 on Friday night at home. The Huskies scored two runs in the bottom of the seventh to take the five-run lead, but Willmar added a run in the eighth and three more in the ninth. Greg Lambert (Southern Illinois) led off the final inning with a home run, and a run-scoring groundout and single made it a one-run game. Wade Regas (Texas Wesleyan) got a flyout to pick up the save for Duluth. Ryan Tapani (Creighton) earned the victory for the Huskies with seven innings pitched and allowed a pair of runs on seven hits and a walk with two strikeouts.
Rockford 15, Kenosha 14
In perhaps the craziest games of the 2016 Northwoods League season, the Rockford Rivets defeated the Kenosha Kingfish 15-14 in walk-off fashion in 10 innings. The teams combined to score 29 runs and record 34 hits. Rockford scored seven in the first and two more in the second to take a 9-1 lead. The Rivets scored five more in the fourth, and by that time it was a 14-3 advantage. The Kingfish rallied all the way back from 11 runs down with four runs in the sixth, one in the seventh, four in the eighth and two more to tie it at 14 in the ninth. Ricardo Ramirez's (UIC) run-scoring single in the bottom of the 10th gave Rockford the victory.
Waterloo 7, Lakeshore 6
The Waterloo Bucks had a 6-2 lead going into the bottom of the seventh against the Lakeshore Chinooks and were able to hang on for the one-run victory. The Chinooks scored four in the seventh to tie the game, but Zach Fricke (Iowa) homered in his lone at bat in the top of the eight innign to give the Bucks a 7-6 advantage. Zac Sanders (New Mexico Junior College) knocked in four runs for the Bucks, who moved to 9-2 on the year. Andrew Muehlberger (Central Missouri) picked up the win, and Brandon Downey (Maryville University) recorded the save for Waterloo.
Mankato 7, Eau Claire 3
The Mankato MoonDogs defeated the Eau Claire Express 7-3 on Friday night at home. Mankato's Josh Matheson (Minnesota State Mankato) earned the victory in the game. He allowed three runs on six hits and three walks with five strikeouts over six innings. Rightfielder Gavin Wehby (Nicholls State) recorded three hits on the night and scored a run. MoonDogs centerfielder Marcus Pingleton (Heartland CC) hit 2-for-4 with two runs batted in and a run scored. Bryce Adams (LSU) homered in the victory for Mankato.
St. Cloud 8, Rochester 4
The St. Cloud Rox jumped out to an 8-0 lead over the Rochester Honkers and never looked back in the four-run victory on Friday night. St. Cloud scored four runs in the bottom of the fourth, capped off by a three-run homer for rightfielder Ben Peterson (North Dakota State University). Matt Shannon (Angelo State University) tossed seven shutout innings for the Rox. In his first start of the season, he allowed just one hit with three walks and nine strikeouts in seven innings of work.
La Crosse 4, Thunder Bay 3
The La Crosse Loggers scored in just one inning, but the four-run sixth inning is all they needed to defeat the Thunder Bay Border Cats 4-3 on Friday night. The big inning for La Crosse was highlighted by a three-run home run from Kevin Collard (San Diego) for his third long ball of the season. Loggers' starter Mark Nowaczewski (Nevada) threw seven innings and allowed three runs, one earned on six hits and no walks with two strikeouts. Andrew Perez (South Florida) came in for the final two innings and struck out three batters for the save.
Kalamazoo 9, Wisconsin 8
The Wisconsin Woodchucks nearly rallied back from a six-run deficit but game a run short in a 9-8 loss to the Kalamazoo Growlers. Kalamazoo put up six runs in the bottom of the fifth to make it a 7-1 game, but Wisconsin responded with six runs of its own in the top of the eighth to tie it back up. The Growlers took the lead right back in the bottom of the inning with a pair of runs to take a 9-7 advantage. The Woodchucks added a run in the ninth but left runners stranded on first and second base to end the game. Kalamazoo's BJ Butler (Ball State) threw seven innings and allowed one run that was not earned, six hits and no walks with six strikeouts.
Madison 2, Wisconsin Rapids 1
The Madison Mallards outlasted the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters in a pitcher's duel on Friday night to snap the Rafters' four-game winning streak. The game was called after five innings due to weather, as the teams combined for just six hits – four for Wisconsin Rapids and two for Madison. Lucas Halstead (Pacific) knocked in both of the runs for Madison with a two-run home run in the top of the first inning, which was enough runs for the victory. Halstead now has five homers on the season, which is tied for the Northwoods League lead.
Battle Creek @ Green Bay (4:00 PM) – Game 1
Battle Creek @ Green Bay (6:35 PM) – Game 2
Rochester @ St. Cloud (6:05 PM)
Wisconsin @ Kalamazoo (6:05 PM)
Eau Claire @ Mankato (6:05 PM)
La Crosse @ Thunder Bay (6:05 PM)
Kenosha @ Rockford (6:35 PM)
Waterloo @ Lakeshore (6:35 PM)
Willmar @ Duluth (6:35 PM)
Wisconsin Rapids @ Madison (6:35 PM)