Express Top Border Cats in Back and Forth Game
Eau Claire, WI – The Eau Claire Express (6-7) topped the Thunder Bay Border Cats (3-10) Sunday afternoon at Carson Park. The 9-6 victory made it four straight wins for the Express.
Lakeland University Postgame Recap: Rolling into the bottom of the 1st inning, the Trains were quick to jump on the board. Back-to-back singles by Spencer Myers (Notre Dame) and Matt Bottcher (Illinois-Chicago) put Myers in scoring position for Nick Lopez (Illinois-Chicago) who then singled in Myers.
After the Border Cats tied the game in the top of 2nd, the Express quickly took it back in the bottom half. Dave LaManna (Notre Dame) lead off with a double and advanced to third on a Sam Stonskas (Blackhawk CC) single. LaManna scored in the next at bat when he snuck home after the Border Cats tried to pick off Stonskas at first.
Thunder Bay once again took a one run lead after scoring one run in both the 5th and the 6th innings. Eau Claire scored three in the bottom of the 6th, making it a 5-3 ballgame in favor of the Express. All runs came with two outs in the inning. Sam Kohnle (Winona State) singled and scored off a LaManna RBI triple, his first of the season. Garett Lake (Pima CC) was hit by a pitch, putting two men on the base paths. Both came around to score on two errors by the Border Cats.
Both teams had a big 8th inning, with Thunder Bay scoring 3 runs and Eau Claire scoring 4. Kohnle started off with a single and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by LaManna. Lake showed power, blasting a two-run home run over the tall right field wall. Myers followed with a walk and advanced to third on Bottcher’s single. Both Myers and Bottcher scored on Lopez’s 2 RBI single.
A 1-2-3 top of the 9th secured the Express victory.
Tanner Kohlhepp (Tennessee), an Eau Claire native, started on the mound and tossed 5 innings. He gave up two runs on four hits, a walk, and struck out three. Newly acquired Ethan Swanson (Cowley CC) entered in relief and earned the win. Swanson went three innings and gave up four runs. Brennan Jordan (Cowley CC) followed his Tiger teammate and earned the save after throwing a scoreless, no hit inning.
The Express finish their homestand tomorrow night against the Thunder Bay Border Cats at 6:35 pm. Bring man’s best friend to Carson Park and enjoy America’s pastime at Bark in the Park night. emBARK will sponsor the game and there will be a dog bandana giveaway.
The Eau Claire Express are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The 25-year old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 22 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, over 200 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (MIA). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.eauclaireexpress.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Express as your favorite team.