Woodchucks Shut Out Chinooks Offense
Mequon, WI – The Chinooks had a fairly disappointing end to the first half of the Northwoods League season, which finished up on June 30th. The team looked to have a shot at finding their way into first place after sitting two games back with four games to be played, but two games were postponed, hurting the team's chances. They could not take advantage of an outisde shot on the final day of the first half, losing both games to ultimate division champion Kenosha.
The slate was wiped clean as the team took on the Wisconsin Woodchucks on Wednesday in the first game of the second half. The Chinooks sent Brian Keller (UW-Milwaukee) to the mound for his fifth start of the summer. He delivered a solid, if unspectacular start. The Woodchucks scored a run off of him in the top of the first after Max Ponzurick (Virginia Tech) was brought home by a single from Taylor Kohlway (UW-La Crosse). They scored again in the third, this time on a sacrifice fly from Ponzurick. Keller let up one more run in the sixth, making an error to let Kohlway reach third and giving up a single to Albee Weiss (Cal State Northridge) that plated Kohlway.
Keller was removed from the game after the sixth inning having allowed three runs, one of them unearned. He threw 100 pitches while striking out four and also walking four.
The Chinooks offense first threatened in the second. Mark Kolozsvary (Florida) walked with two outs in the inning, and an Anthony Massicci (Canisius) single put two runners on with two outs. The team could not capitalize, however, after Jake Romano (Miami-Ohio) flew out to end the inning.
Another chance came in the third, but some mistakes cost the Chinooks. Jack Benninghoff (Arkansas) and Zarley Zalewski (Kent State) started the frame with back-to-back base knocks to put two on with no down. Kyle Fiala (Notre Dame) failed to execute a bunt, though, popping it up to the catcher. To make matters worse, Benninghoff made a baserunning mistake, missing the fact that the bunt was popped up and being doubled off at second base. The Woodchucks ultimately left the inning unscathed.
The Chinooks brought on Parker Sanburn (Arkansas), brother of Chicago White Sox prospect Nolan Sanburn, to toss the seventh inning. He worked around a leadoff walk to throw a scoreless inning, the only one he would pitch.
Nick Brown (Missouri State) was the next reliever that the Chinooks used. He struck out one in a scoreless inning before coming out of the game in favor of Weston Mason (Louisiana-Monroe), who hurled a shutout frame of his own while striking out all three batters he faced.
The Chinooks were ultimately held without a run for the whole game as Dylan Dwyer (Kentucky) had a fantastic outing for the Woodchucks. He threw 8.2 innings in the game without allowing a run, needing just 92 pitches to do so. Dwyer scattered six hits and walked two batters while striking out one.
These two teams will square of again Thursday at Kapco Park at 6:35 p.m. After that, the Chinooks go on the road to play Kalamazoo in a pair of doubleheaders on Friday and Saturday.
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 draws 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 120 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WSH) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WSH), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Lucas Duda (NYM) and Ben Zobrist (OAK). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information visit www.lakeshorechinooks.com.