Mequon, WI – With 34 road games having been played on the year, the Lakeshore Chinooks began their final road trip on Thursday in Wausau against the Wisconsin Woodchucks. In the first contest of a two-game series, the Chinooks were victorious by a final score of 8-4.
The Chinooks started off the scoring with a run in the top of the first. Anthony Massicci (Canisius) singled to lead off the frame, and he advanced to second when Jake Romano (Miami-Ohio) reached on an error. After both runners moved up on a wild pitch, Massicci came around to score thanks to a Doug Kraeger (Richmond) base knock.
The lead did not last long, however, as the Woodchucks tied things up in the bottom half of the inning. Marshall Kasowski (Houston) was the starter for Lakeshore, ceding a run when Yusuke Akitoski (Cal State Northridge) slapped an RBI single.
The Chinooks regained the lead behind a two-run third. Kraeger drew a two-out walk in the frame, and he would proceed to come around courtesy of Jack Benninghoff (Arkansas), who smacked a two-run homer to make it a 3-1 game.
Once again the advantage was short-lived, this time when the Woodchucks took the lead in the bottom of the third. Albee Weiss (Cal State Northridge) tied things up with a two-run shot of his own, and an RBI single off the bat of Alex Cordova (UW- La Crosse) put Wisconsin ahead. That was the final inning for Kasowski as he was relieved by Kevin Long (Lehigh).
The Chinooks came right back in the top of the fourth to regain the lead. Massicci reached base on an error with two outs in the inning, and a Romano walk put two runners on. Massicci would come around to score thanks to a Zarley Zalewski (Kent State) single, and Romano also worked his way to home while Kraeger was at the plate.
No one scored again until the top of the seventh when the Lakeshore offense brought in two insurance runs. Kraeger got things going, smacking a solo home run to lead off the inning. The team added another run after Mark Kolozsvary (Florida) singled and later scored on a double off the bat of David Edson (USC) to make it a 7-4 game. The Chinooks plated their eighth and final run of the game in the ninth. Again, this came via a long ball, this one courtesy of a Greg Deichmann (Louisiana State) solo shot.
Long saved the day as he was the only reliever that the Chinooks needed to use. He fired 6.0 scoreless innings giving up just one hit and walking two batters while striking out seven. Normally a starter, Long thrived in the relief role and this win would not have been possible without him.
The Chinooks and Woodchucks will square off again on Friday to finish off the series.
The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. The 21 year old summer collegiate 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 120 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Lucas Duda (NYM) and Ben Zobrist (OAK). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. For more information, visit www.lakeshorechinooks.com.