Minot N.D. – The Express capped off their 4-game series in Minot with a win over the hometown Hot Tots with a final score of 14-8.
There was pop in the bats of the Eau Claire squad early, as they tacked runs on the board in the first three consecutive innings. Bronson Rivera (Hawaii) got things started off in the top of the 1st with a double to the right fielder, which scored Rayth Petersen (UIC). This was followed up by a Dylan O’Connell (St. Thomas) double which drove in another 2 runs in the form of Rivera and Reed Latimer (Montevallo).
In the 2nd inning of play, the Trains were hungry for more as Ryan Nagelbach (UIC) stepped up and smoked a home run over the right field wall, his 4th of the young season. After a couple more runners reached, O’Connell followed suit and hit a homer of his own over the center field fence, which again drove in the baserunners Latimer and Rivera. A few more singles and some crafty baserunning brought the 2nd inning runs total to 6.
In the bottom of that same inning, the Hot Tots responded with 4 runs of their own, bringing the game within reach, but ultimately the Minot Men were unable to close the gap.
Jacob Taggart (Utah Tech), Kale Hopke (NDSU), Cal Higgins (WKU), and Matt Helwig (Lewis) were the 4 arms used in the game. Hopke was awarded the win after throwing for 3 innings, giving up 0 hits, 0 runs, and striking out 2 batters.
Ryan Nagelbach earned himself NWL Player of the Night Honors after going 3 for 6 with a Home Run, Triple, 2 RBI, and 2 runs scored on the night. His bat, and others in the Eau Claire lineup propelled the team to a win to finish off their North Dakota road trip with a win.
The Express will have a day off before coming back home for their game on Thursday, June 15th at Carson Park. They will face the Duluth Huskies with the first pitch coming at 6:35 p.m. CST. Be sure to stop out to the game and get a free T-shirt courtesy of the Eau Claire Career Development Center!
The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Entering its’ 30th season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 24 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, 325 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time All-Star and 2016 Roberto Clemente Award winner Curtis Granderson, three-time Cy Young Award winner and World Series Champion Max Scherzer (NYM), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS). As well as 2019 Rookie of the Year and 2019/2021 Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and 2021 All-Star, MLB Gold Glove winner and 2019 Second Team All-MLB shortstop Marcus Semien (TEX). League games are viewable live for FREE via the Northwoods League website at watchnwl.com as well as select games on ESPN+ and ESPNU. For more information, visit www.northwoodsleague.com or download the Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play.