Eau Claire, WI – The Express were back at home this Thursday evening after a 6 game road trip through North Dakota. It was just as though they had never left, as they continued their trend of winning at home with a final score of 5-4 vs. the Duluth Huskies.
The Huskies Starting pitcher, Chas Melvin, was pushed to the maximum of 35 pitches in the first inning of the game, ending his night prematurely. The Express batters were getting to Melvin early though, as their good eyes put runners on base. With the bases loaded, Cole Conn (UIC) had his first plate appearance of the season, and with it came his first Hit-By-Pitch of the year. This, with a proceeding Dylan O’Connell (St. Thomas) Sacrifice Fly, put 2 on the board for the home team in the bottom of the 1st.
In the second inning, Rayth Petersen (UIC) knocked another run in on a Fielder’s Choice, and another 2 runs came in the 3rd. One of these runs scored just before the final out was recorded in the bottom of the third, as Nate Witte’s single, brought O’Connell home just before Camden Ross (Western Kentucky) was put out on a Hail Mary throw from the Duluth right fielder.
After the first 3, the scoring cooled for the Express, but luckily the starting pitching was strong tonight for the Men in Orange. Jake Matthaidess (Oakland) got the win for Eau Claire tonight in 6 innings pitched. In his outing, he gave up just 1 run on 3 hits, with 5 strikeouts. This solid performance on the bump earned him tonight’s “Player of The Game” Honors.
Duluth threatened late in the 8th inning, bringing the score to within 1 run, but closer Matt Helwig (Lewis) extinguished any hopes that the Huskies may have had for staging a comeback in the top of the 9th. He struck out 2, in 1 inning, and earned his first save of the season, sealing the deal for the Express.
The Express are back in action tomorrow at Carson Park in Eau Claire. It’s Mustard Night at the ballpark, presented by Silver Spring Foods, so be sure to stop out for an evening filled with giveaways, samples, and fun. First Pitch is at 7:05 p.m. CST.
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.