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Published On: July 12th, 2020
FOND DU LAC, WI – The Dock Spiders (6-5) swept their two-game home series against the La Crosse Loggers (5-7) after winning a close game on Sunday, 9-7. 

Fond du Lac would open the scoring in the second inning for the second straight game, which started with a leadoff single from John Rhodes (University of Kentucky) that made it six consecutive at-bats that he reached base. Tim Elko (University of Mississippi) then dropped a softly-hit fly ball into right field to reach first. With runners on first and second with nobody out, Jack Alexander (Austin Peay) bunted a pop fly to the left of the mound, which was fielded by Loggers pitcher Lucas Braun (University of San Diego), but his three to first sailed wide and allowed Rhodes to score to give the Dock Spiders the 1-0 lead.

Ryan Ritter (University of Kentucky) added his fourth RBI in the last two games with a sacrifice fly to right field that brought in Elko to make it 2-0 Fond du Lac.

Sam Novitske (University of Oregon) came up next and lined a single into left field to put runners on first and third for the Dock Spiders. Fondy would continue their small ball strategy, as Tate Kolwyck (Vanderbilt University) dropped a bunt to the mound to try and move Novitske up, but Braun again had trouble fielding the ball and couldn’t come up with the play as Alexander scored to give the home team a 3-0 lead.

Three batters later, Andrew Bullock (Charleston Southern University) slapped a base hit into center field that scored Novitske and Kolywck that made it a 5-0 Dock Spiders lead. Fond du Lac would bat through their order and record five hits in the inning.

Three more runs came in for Fondy in the bottom of the fifth, as Ritter continued his hot streak at the plate with a double into right field that scored Brayden Frazier (University of Iowa) from second. Drew Stahl (University of Minnesota) made it back-to-back RBI hits with a grounder up the middle to bring in Alexander. One more run came across in the fifth after Kolwyck grounded out to short that allowed Ritter to come in and make it 8-0 Dock Spiders.

Fond du Lac would plate their ninth run of the game following an RBI-single from Rhodes in the bottom of the sixth, his second hit of the day, and his third RBI in his last two games.

The Loggers would stay scoreless up into the seventh inning before Jason Hodges (University of Arkansas) lined a base hit to center that scored their first run of the game. La Crosse would load the bases, followed by a two-RBI single from Kobe Kato (University of Arizona) that made it 9-3.

Things got dicey in the ninth inning, as four consecutive Loggers hitters would reach base to start the inning. One run would score on a wild pitch, followed by a fielder’s choice groundout from JT Thompson (Texas State University) that allowed another run to score and bring the Loggers to within four. Austin Murr (North Carolina State University) lined to right field that scored another run and made it a three-run deficit. The Dock Spiders nearly ended the game one batter later but instead saw their lead shrink to two after a throw from Ritter to first sailed over the head of Bullock and allowed one more run to cross home plate and keep the Loggers alive. A jam-shot popout to Ritter finally ended the game and gave the Dock Spiders the nailbiting 9-7 victory.

Ryan Bergert (West Virginia University) had a phenomenal third appearance of the season, allowing only two hits in six shutout innings to earn the win. Bergert struck out four batters to bring his season total to 12. Trace Hoffman (University of Iowa) pitched in one and one-third innings and only gave up one hit. Nate Thomas (Northern Illinois University) came in for the ninth and registered the save, his first of the season.

The Dock Spiders will be on the road on Monday night as they look to make it three games in a row against the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters. First pitch for Monday’s game is scheduled for 6:35 pm.

The Fond du Lac Dock Spiders 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. Having completed its’ 26th season, the Northwoods 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 230 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 (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS). As well as 2019 Rookie of the Year and Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and MLB All-Star Jordan Zimmermann (DET). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.dockspiders.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Dock Spiders as your favorite team.