La Crosse, Wisc.- The Loggers give up 5 runs in the final 3 innings after a 2 hour and 45 minute rain delay. Eau Claire wins the North Division with the victory.
Eau Claire jumped on the board first in the opening half inning. Daulton Varsho (UW-Milwaukee) singled with Ben Mezzenga (Minnesota) on 2nd and one out. Holmen native, Rudy Rott (Ohio) scored Varsho two batters later on a sacrifice fly to left field.
Griffin Conine (Duke) continued his ramage of opposing pitching in the bottom of the 1st with a solo home run on a 1-0 pitch over the Gordy’s cabin in right field. That would make it his 3rd home run in as many games.
Eau Claire got the run back in the very next inning on a throwing error by Loggers’ third baseman Cullen Large (William & Mary) that scored Mickey McDonald (Illinois-Chicago).
La Crosse tied the game up on three consecutive singles. Grant Fennell (Nevada) was thrown out at 2nd base trying to move up a base on the throw home. That makes the game interesting, because before the Express could start the inning in the 7th, two bolts of lightning flashed north of the stadium, sending the game into a delay.
With the game tied, the game could not be called. If Fennell had not be thrown out, the Loggers would have had two runners on with two outs in a tie ballgame. Another run would have given them the lead that might have led to the game being called.
After 2 hours and 45 minutes, the game finally did resume from Copeland Park. The Loggers came out of the break looking sluggish. Ben Mezzenga (Minnesota) led off the 7th with a walk. He scored three batters later on a single up the middle by Alex McKenna (Cal Poly). A wild pitch scored McKenna to give the Express a 2-run lead.
Eau Claire piled on 3 more runs in the 8th on two hits, an error, and a wild pitch. That lead was insurmountable as the Express take the extended game 8-3 and the North Division.
La Crosse committed 5 errors in the game. Cullen Large was responsible for a team record 4 of the 5 errors.
La Crosse ends the first half 17-19. They drop down to 7th place overall in the division. Overall records are taken into account from the wild card race. Eau Claire wins their 25th game (25-11). La Crosse stays at home, to welcome in the last place Thunder Bay Border Cats to Copeland Park. Game time is 7:05 with the gates opening at 6 pm.