Duluth, MN – The Eau Claire Express (15-13, 34-30) had the early lead against the Duluth Huskies (18-10, 31-33) on Friday night at Wade Stadium. However, the Express quickly fell behind and could not complete the 9th inning rally as they fell by a final of 12-7.
Lakeland University Postgame Recap
Two runs came in to score in the top of the 1st inning for Eau Claire. Zach Gilles (Central Michigan) and Nick Marinconz (Cal Poly) both singled and moved up a bag on a wild pitch. Brandon Dieter (Stanford) brought both runners home on a 2 RBI single that put the Express up 2-0.
The game was quiet from then until the 4th inning when the Huskies offense started to wake up. Duluth scored two runs in the 4th, four runs in the 5th, and a run in the 6th inning to go up 7-2.
Starting to tack away at the lead, the Express scored a run in the top of the 7th. The bases loaded on a single from Connor Laspina (Flagler College) and walks issued to Sam Kohnle (Winona State) and Sam Stonskas (Blackhawk CC). Gilles hit a sacrifice fly to the left fielder to score Laspina.
Duluth continued to put the game away by scoring 3 runs in the bottom of the 7th on two hits and three walks. They followed by adding two more runs in the 8th to take a 12-3 lead.
The Express attempted a 9th inning comeback but fell short. The bases loaded on three straight walks to Stonskas, Mariconz, and Matt Bottcher (Illinois-Chicago). Dieter came up with a bit two RBI double and his Stanford teammate Vincent Martinez followed with a two RBI single. That would be all the Express could muster in the comeback as their threat quickly ended as they fell 12-7.
Brad Rindfleisch (UW Stout) got the start for the Express and went 3.1 innings, giving up 2 runs on 6 hits while striking out 5. Zach Gustafson (Minnesota-State) took the loss after throwing 1.2 innings with 4 runs scoring. Adam LaRock finished the last 3.0 innings, allowing 6 runs on 6 hits and 5 walks.
Eau Claire will continue on the road trip that will last through the weekend. They return home to Carson Park on Monday, August 5th for a 6:35 pm first pitch. It’s Bus’ting at the Seams School Supply Drive night! School is almost back in session and Student Transit want you to help them fill the bus with supplies for area schools. Check out our social media for a chance to uncover a special discount at tonight’s game.
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.