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Growlers Earn Comeback Win on Opening Night

KALAMAZOO, Mich. – The Kalamazoo Growlers scored four runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to beat the Lakeshore Chinooks 4-3 on Tuesday night.

Jeff Burch (KVCC) started for the Growlers and tossed 6.1 innings pitched while striking out 8. Burch only allowed two hits and two runs in his first start for the Growlers.

Prior to the eighth inning, Dakota Roberts (Northwood) threw 1.2 innings in relief of Burch. He walked one but kept the Chinooks from threatening.

Parker Murdie (Jackson CC) played shortstop and was the story at the plate for Kalamazoo going 2-for-2 with a walk and a run scored and led off the eighth for the Growlers in the comeback.

Following Murdie’s walk to start the eighth, Zach Daniels (Tennessee) popped out but Donovan Clark (Huntington) walked to put runners on first and second. Niko Kavadas (Notre Dame) came to the plate and bounced a ball to shortstop but Jacob Thompson threw it away down the left field line hoping to force out the lead runner Murdie. Murdie scored on the play with both runners advancing.

Donald Ring (Hillsdale) then hit an RBI single to tie the game 2-2 scoring Clark. The following batter Jared Miller (ND) attempted a safety squeeze bunt but Kavadas was thrown out at home for the second out. Back-to-back singles from Anthony Cocco (Kankakee CC) and Michael Maclean (Wayne State) added two more runs for the Growlers to make the score 4-3.

The Chinooks added a run in the top of the ninth on a Takahiro Yamada double but Mason Shinabery (Huntington) closed out the game for the save for the Growlers.

The Growlers will take on Lakeshore again tomorrow, May 30 at 11:05 A.M., with local starter Adam Wheaton on the hill for STEM Education Day presented by Stryker.

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The Kalamazoo Growlers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Entering its 25th anniversary season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 20 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, 190 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (TOR).  All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.growlersbaseball.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Growlers as your favorite team.