The Chinooks traveled to the “Duck Pond” at Warner Park for the first time on June 10. The team left with a 5-1 victory and sole possession of first place in the Northwoods League South Division.
Efficient starting pitching by G.J. Strauss (Florida Tech) greatly contributed to the win. He did not surrender a hit until the sixth inning, when Madison designated hitter Pete Alonso hit a solo homer. Strauss struck out four and issued four walks as well.
Second-year Chinooks third baseman Brant Valach went 3-4 in the game. He had two singles, walked and scored two runs. In the seventh inning, he also hit his first home run of the year, which gave the Chinooks a 5-1 lead.
Garrett Brummett (Wichita State) and newcomer Shaun Anderson (Florida) combined for three scoreless relief innings. The righty Anderson recorded three strikeouts in his first Lakeshore appearance.
Second baseman Jake Noll (Florida Gulf Coast) led off the game with a double in the first. He stole second base and was driven in by Aaron Huesman (Dayton). The Chinooks had a 1-0 lead.
In the second, Carter White (Memphis) drew a walk. Then, Sawyer Polen (Kent State) got his first basehit of the year. Both White and Polen advanced on a wild pitch by Mallards starter Alex Pondick. White scored on a sacrifice fly by Noll.
Lakeshore also put three more across in the third. Back-to-back singles by Valach and Kyle Wood (Purdue) started the inning. Catcher Zack Bowers (Georgia) hit a double that scored Valach. White produced a sacrifice fly that scored the first baseman Wood.
The right-hander Strauss (2-0) picked up the win for Lakeshore. Pondick (2-1) suffered his first loss of the year.
The team returns for a six-game home stand Wednesday, June 11. They take on the Mallards again at Kapco Park. First pitch is at 6:35 p.m.
The Lakeshore Chinooks are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 21st season of summer collegiate baseball, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 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, more than 115 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (DET) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (STL) and Ben Zobrist (TB). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League YouTube channel<http://northwoodsleague.com/video/>. For more information, visit www.lakeshorechinooks.com.