In a day that featured two seven-inning games between the Eau Claire Express and the Alexandria Blue Anchors at Carson Park, the Express couldn’t manage a single run and dropped both games, by a score of 1-0 and the second 5-0.
Game one was a close one as it was a scoreless affair entering the final inning. In the top of the seventh inning an error by third baseman Sam Mrstik turned a would-be double play into trouble for the Express when the throw to second went into right field. With runners on the corners, a wild pitch from starter Anthony Herron Jr. scored the winning run.
Herron pitched well throwing 6.2 innings allowing five hits and just the one run. He also struck out seven batters compared to just two walks.
The Express only managed four hits in game one. They missed a big opportunity in the bottom of the fifth inning after Joe Gillette was picked off first base and three pitches later Daniel Jipping hit a triple that would have scored Gillette.
Game two didn’t get much better for Eau Claire who once again were only able to smack four hits all game. Two of the hits came with two outs in the final frame.
Doug Still started game two on the mound and pitched three innings. He allowed four hits and gave up three runs, two of them earned while notching one strikeout.
Travon Benton came off his walk-off night with two of Eau Claire’s four hits in game two. Express Field Manager Dale Varsho said it’s almost like he has seen this before.
“It’s kind of like earlier in the season, we just couldn’t figure it out,” said Varsho. “We just didn’t get quality at bats, it was a repeat of what was happening earlier in the season for us.”
After a solid three game winning streak Varsho said there were certain aspects of the team’s game that was missing from the field.
“They all kind of hurt us today (missed opportunities),” said Varsho. “A routine double play that we botched, other routine plays that we can make that we didn’t make today.”
The Express now fall to 6-10 in the second half of the Northwoods League Season and 19-31 overall. With one game remaining in the home stand Varsho and company look to get back on track before a long road trip that includes the All-Star Break.
“Its one of those things that we can compete a lot better than how we played today,” said Varsho. “It’s frustrating to know that.”
Tomorrow’s game at Carson Park is between the Eau Claire Express and the Lakeshore Chinooks. The game is sponsored by Subway and there will be a free 6” Sub Coupon Giveaway. First pitch is set for 6:35 p.m.