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Dock Spiders Begin Final Week against Rafters

FOND DU LAC, WI – As the Northwoods League regular season enters its final week, the Fond du Lac Dock Spiders (34-31, 15-16) hit the road for a series against the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (52-14, 23-8) at Witter Field. Over the final six games of the regular season, the Dock Spiders and Rafters will meet four times, including three at Witter Field. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m., with coverage beginning at 6:20 on the Dock Spiders Radio Network.

TODAY’S STORYLINES

WE’LL SEE YOU OFTEN: Today’s game marks the first of four between the Dock Spiders and Rafters over the final six games of the regular season… Last time the two teams met both games went into extra-innings and included the first Dock Spiders walk-off of the season on July 22 in a 2-1, 10-inning win… OF Evan Smith was the one who delivered the walk-off hit, lining a double to the wall in right to score 1B Andrew Rivas... That win was also the first for the Dock Spiders against the Rafters in 2022 and broke an eight-game losing streak against the Rafters dating back to 2021.

NOLAND’S ON A ROLL: Dock Spiders C/INF Parker Noland finished the weekend on a tear, tallying his fourth straight multi-hit game on Sunday with a 2-4 performance… Over his last four games, Noland has gone 11-18 at the plate with two doubles, and four RBI and has struck out once in 18 plate appearances… Noland’s average has also shot up from .283 to .328, a 45-point increase… This season, Noland has tallied 15 multi-hit games, with six of them coming over his last eight appearances.

WHY DO WE LIKE HIM? HE GETS ON BASE: When OF Andrew Sojka was hit by a pitch in his first plate appearance on Sunday against the Woodchucks, that extended his on-base streak to 23 straight games, the longest by a Dock Spider in 2022…  The previous longest was held by OF Nick Mitchell at 22… Over that span, which started on July 10 against the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (27 days ago), Sojka has a .491 OBP and a 1.157 OPS… In 26 games with the Dock Spiders, Sojka has recorded a hit in 24 games and has reached base in 25.

TRIPLE UP: OF Nick Mitchell became the seventh player in Northwoods League history to tally at least eight triples in a season when he smashed one in the ninth for his eighth of the year… His eighth triple put him in a six-way tie for second all-time in a single season… OF James Ramsey (Duluth, 2012) holds the Northwoods League record at 10… Mitchell became the first to tally at least eight in a season since OF Michael Slaten (Traverse City) reached the mark in 2019.

PATH TO THE PLAYOFFS: If the season ended today, the Dock Spiders would make the playoffs, as they enter today with the second-best overall record in the Great Lakes West Division, a half-game ahead of the Lakeshore Chinooks and Wausau Woodchucks with six games remaining… Due to postponements and suspended games, the Chinooks have eight games remaining while the Woodchucks have seven… If the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters win the second-half division title, the final playoff spot in the division will go to the next-best overall record… The Rafters can clinch the second-half Great Lakes West Division title with a win and a Woodchucks loss.

TODAY’S STARTING PITCHING MATCH-UP

RHP CONNOR McKENNA (FDL) will make his second start of the summer, and his fourth appearance… McKenna threw a season-high 56 pitches in his last appearance against the Battle Creek Battle Jacks on August 3.

RHP NICK TORRED (WIR) is set to make his eighth start of the summer, and first appearance against the Dock Spiders since July 11, when he went three innings in relief… In his last start, on August 3, he allowed three runs in five innings against the Kokomo Jackrabbits, and struck out five.