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Express Come Roaring Back to Defeat Larks

Box Score

Eau Claire, WI – The Eau Claire Express (17-12) came roaring back against the Bismarck Larks (10-21) to win 7-6. After a slow and sluggish start, a huge, 5-run 7th inning drove Eau Claire to victory.

Lakeland University Postgame Recap

The Express got one run in each of the first two innings. In the 1st, Cole Cabrera (Cal Poly) was hit by a pitch, stole both second and third base, then scored on a sacrifice fly. To start the 2nd inning, Nick Marinconz (Cal Poly) singled and stole second. He advanced to third on a single from Sam Stonskas (Blackhawk CC) and scored on an RBI double hit by Cabrera.

Bismarck’s offense began to show power in the 3rd inning. They took a 3-2 lead on a three-run home run hit by Hanchey that was a no doubter to left field. Hanchey wasn’t finished yet. The catcher blasted a solo shot in the 5th inning for his second homer of the game and gave Bismarck a 4-2 lead.

Eau Claire could not get anything going until the 7th inning when they came roaring to life, scoring 5 runs to go up 7-4. Brock Burton (Grand Canyon) singled and moved to second on an error by the Larks centerfielder. Matt Bottcher (Illinois-Chicago) followed with a walk. Both runners advanced on a wild pitch and came in to score on a 2 RBI single from Zach Gilles (Central Michigan). After a mound visit, Marinconz singled to move Gilles to third. In the next at bat, David LaManna (Notre Dame) singled to play Gilles. The bases loaded on a Brandon Dieter (Stanford) walk and the final run of the inning scored on a Cabrera hit by pitch.

The Larks attempted a comeback in the 8th inning but could only manage to score 2 runs and bring the score to the final of 7-6.

Craig Colen (Cal Poly) started for the Express and went 6.0 innings, giving up four runs on eight hits and two walks while striking out seven. Kuster Kinlecheenie (Montevallo) earned the win after tossing 2.0 innings and allowing two runs on two hits and four walks. Brandon Dieter (Stanford) earned the save after entered and slamming the door shut on the Larks in the 9th.

The Major League Dreams Showcase is slated for Tuesday, August 6th, and the Express will have three representatives in the game. Congratulations and best of luck to Matt Bottcher, Alec Baker, and Brandon Dieter. The Express will then return home on Wednesday, August 7th, for a 6:35 pm first pitch against the Larks. Join us for Field of Dreams Night, sponsored by Stucky Chiropractic and Kristo Orthodontics! Is this Heaven? No, it’s Carson Park. Walk through the cornfields and join us as we welcome Dwier Brown, the actor that played John Kinsella in ‘Field of Dreams’ while we honor one of the greatest baseball movies ever made.

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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.