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Published On: June 28th, 2016

Box Score


Eau Claire, Wis.— Eau Claire’s winning streak came to a halt in a 4-2 loss at the hands of the Green Bay Bullfrogs tonight. Despite scoring first in the contest, a three-run fourth inning gave the Bullfrogs a lead that they would protect throughout the game, toppling the top team in the league. The Express fall to 18-9 this season with a rematch scheduled for tomorrow night in Green Bay.


Only one night removed from their series sweep of the St. Cloud Rox, the Express entered Monday night’s matchup in first place in the North Division. Eau Claire held the top record in the Northwoods League at 18-8, a half game ahead of both St. Cloud and the Waterloo Bucks.


Ryan Hamilton came into the game on a hot streak on the mound, notching two wins in his last two starts. Hamilton had allowed just three runs in 13 innings pitched, holding a 5.40 ERA through four starts, including a six inning shut out in his most recent appearance against the Rochester Honkers.


Hamilton’s exceptional control was on display early for the Express, blanking the Bullfrogs through three innings at Joannes Stadium. Hamilton gave up just two hits in three innings, while fanning three Green Bay hitters to extend his scoreless streak to nine consecutive innings without a run allowed.


Chad Mabini, the starter for Green Bay, was similarly dialed in on the mound, giving up just two hits as well while allowing no runs through three innings. Kyle Marinconz, however, tagged Mabini for a run in the top of the fourth with no outs on an RBI single. Marinconz drove in Rudy Rott, who stood on second following a lead off single. Mickey McDonald reached safely on a bunt single, but was stranded at third base following a strikeout and a ground out to end the top of the fourth.


The Bullfrogs replied swiftly, taking a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning. Marcus Shoemaker hit a lead off double off the fence in right field. Shoemaker crossed home plate on a single off the bat of Matthew Hoeg, his second hit of the night. With Hoeg standing on first base, left fielder Jonah Davis crushed a two-run home run to snatch the lead from the Express. It was the second consecutive night Davis has hit a two-run homer, totaling four home runs this season, two of which have come against Eau Claire.


In the top of the sixth, the Express cut the deficit to just one run. McDonald hit a lead off single, stole a base, and advanced to third on a wild pitch, standing just 90 feet away from home with Jared Mang in the batter’s box. Mang hit a deep sacrifice fly to score McDonald to narrow the gap to 3-2 halfway through the sixth.


Austin Clemons tallied his second hit of the game on a one-out single in the bottom of the sixth. After advancing to second base on a ground out, Clemons scored on a Parker Coss single to retake a two-run advantage after six innings. Hamilton struck out two batters in the inning to limit the damage to just one run.


Matt Gunter, Luke Van Lanen, and BJ Sabol pitched three solid innings of relief, not allowing a hit while preserving the lead for Green Bay and sealing the victory, ending the six-game win streak for Eau Claire. Hamilton dropped to 2-3 in five starts this season, while Mabini picked up his first win of the season.


Marinconz led the Express offense with two hits and an RBI in the loss. Mang tallied his fifth RBI on a sacrifice fly, while Zach Ashford reached in all four at bats, drawing four walks in the game and stealing three bases.


The Express will complete the interdivisional series against the Bullfrogs tomorrow night at 7:05p.m. Aaron Shortridge will take the mound, looking to continue his undefeated start to the 2016 season. With a win, Shortridge would capture sole possession of the league-lead in pitching “wins.” Shortridge has pitched 26 innings, striking out 18 opposing batters and holding an impressive 2.07 ERA in four victories for the Express this summer. 


Season tickets and single-game tickets are on sale now for Express home games. 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, 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 portal. For more information, visit or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store and set the Express as your favorite team.