LA CROSSE, WI – There’s nothing quite like opening day of the baseball season and 2,506 Logger fans were treated to a 4-2 victory on Tuesday as the Loggers ushered in their 2023 home slate in style.
In similar fashion to the night before, La Crosse jumped out early by plating three runs in the second inning. After Brandon Hager (Arkansas State) led off with a single, two batters later Michael Dixon (Concordia-Irvine) singled down the first base line before Seth Cox’s (Memphis) infield single drove in the game’s first run. Back-to-back walks to Mic Paul (LSU) and Matthew Piotrowski (Cal-State LA) plated two more to put the Lumbermen up 3-0.
Loggers starter Kenan Elarton (Arizona) then settled in to toss six innings of five-hit, one-run (unearned) baseball to eventually earn the win for his first start of 2023. The right-hander walked five and struck out four before giving way to Colton Vercoe (Wichita State) who threw two innings in relief, allowing one run on three hits. Blake Whiting (Utah) came on in the ninth to slam the door, striking out two of the three batters that he faced.
Hager and Cox paced the Loggers seven-hit attack with each collecting a pair of safeties at the plate.
The win propelled the Loggers to 2-0 after completing the sweep of Eau Claire who fell to 0-2. La Crosse’s homestand will continue on Wednesday night as they welcome the Waterloo Bucks (0-2) to town for the first of a two-game set. Gates will open at 5:30 p.m. with first pitch set for 6:35 p.m.