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Growlers use well-balanced effort to secure first win of 2019

Kalamazoo, MI — The Kalamazoo Growlers (1-1) pitching staff combined for a six-hit shutout on the bump in the Growler’s dominant 8-0 win over the visiting Fond du Lac Dock Spiders (1-1) from Homer Stryker Field. Kalamazoo’s offense came alive with eight runs on 11 total hits to go along with a stellar defensive performance. The Growlers did not commit an error for the second straight contest.

The Growlers grabbed their first lead of the 2019 season with a RBI single by Noah Marcoux (Davenport University) to make it 1-0 in the third inning. The hosts added a pair of insurance runs in the next frame on a RBI triple from Jimmy Sullivan (University of Virginia) followed by Hunter Thorn’s (Purdue Northwest) RBI single to stretch the lead to 3-0 in the fourth.

Kalamazoo’s offense continued to pad its lead with a pair of runs in the seventh and three more in the eighth inning to give the Growlers a commanding 8-0 advantage. All five runs came on just two swings of the bat with a two-run single by Shea Kramer (Utah) in the seventh and a Jacob Hoover (Hillsdale College) three-run bomb in the eighth frame.

Four different Growlers posted multi-hit performances with Marcoux going 3-for-4 with a RBI in his debut, while Hoover went 2-for-5 with three runs knocked in. Joel Brewer (South Carolina) also was 2-for-5 at the dish and Sullivan contributed a 2-for-4 effort with two runs scored in his Kalamazoo debut this afternoon.

Growlers starting pitcher Kaden Helsel (Drury University), along with relievers Brennan Cox (Wayne State), Will Mullen (Western Michigan) and Max Bain (Northwood) each contributed to the shutout performance.

Helsel (1-0) earned the win, tossing five scoreless frames with four hits allowed and seven strikeouts. Fond du Lac starting pitcher Aaron Ball took the loss, falling to 0-1.

The Kalamazoo Growlers remain at Homer Stryker Field tomorrow evening as they welcome the Green Bay Booyah for the opener of a two-game series. First pitch is slated for a 7:05 p.m. start.