Virtual Game Day Program
Eau Claire, Wis.— The Express looked reenergized at the plate in Thursday night’s 9-3 victory over the St. Cloud Rox. Aaron Shortridge hadan excellent game on the mound, completing seven innings while allowing just two runs. The team will head out on a six-game road trip tomorrow to Mankato, Duluth, and Thunder Bay.
The Express bounced back quickly from yesterday’s struggles at the plate, scoring three runs in the first inning. Lead-off man Zach Ashford reached on an infield single, and eventually scored on a fielder’s choice by Daulton Varsho, his league-leading 12th RBI of the season. Tyler Jones hit a double into the gap in left to score Varsho from first base, and would score himself on a sharp single down the first base line to give the Express a 3-0 lead.
Ben Mezzenga, an outfielder from the University of Minnesota, walked in his first at bat of the season. Mezzenga would score the fourth run of the night for the Express in the second, on an errant pick off throw by Rox starter Quinten Sefcik.
The Express added two runs in the fourth inning after back-to-back singles from Sam Hurt and Mezzenga. Hurt scored on a Zach Ashford groundout to first baseman Austin LaDoux. Mezzenga would score from third on a wild pitch from reliever Robbie Palkert, his second run scored of the game.
Cody Bohanek would also score for the Express on a wild pitch, this time by Rox reliever Austin Briggs, after a leadoff single in the fifth. Ashford tallied his second RBI of the night on a slicing line drive between the shortstop and third baseman. Jemuel Angela, the designated hitter from the Netherlands, scored his first run of the season on the play, increasing the Express lead to 8-0.
The Rox broke Shortridge’s shut out in the top of the seventh. Mason Mamarella hit a lead off double, and third baseman Trevor Putzig blasted a two-run home run over the left field wall to cut the Express lead to six runs.
The seventh inning was Shortridge’s last on the mound. He finished the night with seven innings pitched and had three strikeouts, while allowing just two runs on six hits. He would earn his second win of the season, the first Express pitcher to do so this summer.
Denis Karas brought the game within five runs in the eighth inning with a sacrifice fly after the Rox loaded the bases on Emmanuel Castellano. Castellano got the final out of the inning on a ground ball to limit the damage to just one run. Castellano remained on the mound for the ninth, sealing the 9-3 victory.
McDonald scored the ninth and final run for the Express after being hit by a pitch. McDonald raced from second on a throwing error by shortstop Brandon Benson to score his seventh run of the season.
Caleb Boushley will take the mound tomorrow night at 7:05 against the Mankato MoonDogs, looking to repeat his impressive first start of the season, a seven-inning victory over the La Crosse Loggers. The Express improved to 6-4 on the season, while ending a 5-game winning streak for the Rox.'
Season tickets, 5-Game Packs, and single-game tickets are on sale now for Express home games. The all-new 5-Game Pack includes a reserved ticket along with food and beverage for three innings for five of the biggest promotional nights of the 2016 season all for only $45.00. All tickets can be purchased by calling the Express office at 715-839-7788 or by stopping at the downtown office at 102 E. Grand Ave.
The Eau Claire Express are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 23rd season of summer collegiate baseball in 2016, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, more than 150 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Lucas Duda (NYM) and Ben Zobrist (CHC). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League Website. For more information, visit www.eauclaireexpress.com.