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Published On: July 1st, 2023

Duluth, MN –  On a warm Friday night in Duluth, the visiting Eau Claire Express beat the defending Duluth Huskies 6-5.

The Express hopped out to the early lead, scoring 5 of their eventual 6 runs on the night in the top of the 1st inning. Despite only having 2 hits in this inning, the Express were able to capitalize on poor pitching from the Huskies starter and find their way on base. The first hit of this inning was a Dylan O’Connell (St. Thomas) single to right field, which drove in Cort MacDonald (Stanford). From here, Express players took bases on balls, and eventually were walked in for 3 runs in the inning. The final 2 runs in the 1st came off of a Tanner Sagouspe (Cal Poly) triple, which brought home Reed Latimer (Montevallo) and Rayth Petersen (UIC).

The only other scoring of the ballgame for the Eau Claire squad came in the 3rd inning when this time it was Petersen who hit a double, driving in O’Connell.

The pitching combo of Lance Lauve (Southeastern Louisiana) and Kale Hopke (NDSU) kept the Express in the ballgame, as they held the Huskies at arm’s length all night long.

Heading into the bottom of the 9th, up by one run, the Express called upon star closer Matt Helwig (Lewis) to get the job done. He came in and did just that, in a quick 3 up, 3 down inning that saw three consecutive Duluth batters retired.

With the win today, and a Thunder Bay loss vs. Wilmar, the Express move to 1st place in the Great Plains East Division. They are now poised to control their own destiny and earn a playoff berth should they win out the remaining 3 games of the 1st half of the season.

The Huskies and Express will be coming to Carson Park tomorrow to face off once again in an important matchup. First pitch will be thrown at 6:35 pm CT, so be sure to Pack the Park and cheer for your Express in this important game!



The Eau Claire Express are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Now in 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, over 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). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. League games are viewable live at and on ESPN+. For more information, visit 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.