FOND DU LAC, WI – Nick Mitchell (Western Illinois) beat out a weak groundball to second base in the first inning to set the Fond du Lac Dock Spiders single-season hits record with his 78th of the year, but the Battle Creek Battle Jacks offense exploded for a 17-7 win on Wednesday night at Herr-Baker Field.
Mitchell’s hit added his name to yet another Dock Spiders record after the outfielder has already set new franchise highs in triples, with nine, and runs scored, with 64. He also is second in franchise history with 46 RBI.
With the loss, the Dock Spiders fell to 33-28 on the year and 14-13 in the second half. The Battle Jacks improved to 29-32, 11-14 in the half.
The Dock Spiders were able to strike first when Mitchell lined a single to right in the second to score Sawyer Smith (St. Cloud State), and Andrew Sojka (CSUN) brought home the second run of the inning on a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.
In the fourth, the Battle Jacks offense came to life after three no-hit innings from Logan Tabeling (Illinois). The Battle Jacks sent 13 batters to plate and scored seven off five hits to take a 7-2 lead. Robbie Merced (Indiana Tech), James Canar (McPherson College), and Billy Hancock (Mount Marty) all tallied RBI singles in the inning, with Hancock tallying another in his second at-bat of the inning.
The Dock Spiders responded with two in the bottom half of the inning from Parker Noland (Vanderbilt) with a double to make it 7-4. They would then cut the deficit to one in the sixth when Kemp Alderman (Ole Miss) tallied an RBI single and an error that brought him home one batter later.
The seventh inning saw the Battle Jacks explode again, this time for 10 runs, to extend the lead to 17-6. They again sent 13 batters to the plate and tallied nine hits. Canar collected two more RBI on a single for four on the night. Hancock drove another home on a single for his fifth RBI of the night. Aaron Dolney (Eastern Michigan) tripled home two more to make it 13-6. Joey Grabanski (Concordia University-Nebraska) singled home another, Jace Matkin (Madonna) brought home two with a triple, and Merced tallied his second RBI of the night to cap off the inning.
In the ninth, the Dock Spiders scored one on an RBI groundout from Chad Herrera (Viterbo) for his first RBI of the season.
Jackson Braden (3-2, Middle Georgia State) got the win, Logan Tabeling (0-1) took the loss and Damon Cox closed it out to earn the save. The Dock Spiders hit the road tomorrow night against the Green Bay Rockers. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m.
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’ 28th 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 280 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 watchnwl.com. For more information, visit dockspiders.com 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.
PHOTO VIA A FLASH OF SUNSHINE PHOTOGRAPHY