Mequon, WI – Following a 4-2 win over the Loggers on Saturday, the Chinooks returned to Kapco Park on Sunday for game two of the series against La Crosse. However, the Chinooks weren’t as fortunate in game two, as the Loggers’ offense out-slugged the Chinooks in a 4-1 victory for La Crosse to split the two game series with Lakeshore.
New-comer Mitch Sewald (TCU) made his debut appearance on the mound for Lakeshore. He went up against Jack Ralston (UCLA), who was making his first start and seventh appearance of the season for the Loggers. Ralston had struggled coming into Sunday, posting a 0-2 record with a 19.12 ERA while recording 4 strikeouts and 10 walks in his 8.0 innings of work out of the Loggers’ bullpen.
The Loggers struck first in the top of the third. Gavin Johns (UCLA) lead off the inning with a single, later advancing to second on a ground out to short by Mason McCoy (Iowa). After Johns moved to third on a wild pitch, an RBI double down the right field line by Justin Wylie (San Diego State) scored Johns to put the Loggers on the board.
Sewald would leave the game after the third, as Chinooks’ manager Eddy Morgan called Zach Reeg (Augustana) out the bullpen to pitch the fourth.
Reeg held the Loggers’ offense at bay until the top of the fifth. A one-out double to left by Mason McCoy got things going for the Loggers. After a single to left by Justin Wylie put runners on the corners for La Crosse, Cullen Large (William & Mary) roped a ground rule double to left-center to score McCoy to give them a 2-0 lead with runners remaining at second and third. Then, Grant Fennell (Nevada) hit a ground ball to short, but Royce Ando (Michigan State) made an errand throw in an attempt to get Large running to third, which allowed Wylie and Large to come around to score to increase the Loggers’ lead to 4-0. Nick Horvath (Florida) came into the game in relief of Reeg and was able to get out of the inning unscathed, but not before the damage had already been done.
The Chinooks finally got on the board in the bottom of the seventh after Matt Johnson (South Dakota State) welcomed Loggers’ reliever Zach Kesterson (Duke) to the game by smashing his sixth home run of season to bring the score to 4-1.
However, relief appearances by Taylor Blatch (Florida State) and Jared Liebelt (Waubonsee CC) silenced the Chinooks' bats the rest of the game, as the Loggers went on to win by a score of 4-1 to split the series with the Chinooks.
Mitch Sewald was issued the loss in his season debut after giving up one run on three hits with one strikeout in his three innings of work. Jack Ralston was awarded his first win of the season after allowing just four hits with one walk and one strikeout in his five scoreless innings of work. Loggers’ closer Jared Liebelt picked up his first save of the season after coming into the game in the ninth and securing the win for La Crosse.
With the loss the Chinooks drop to 5-7 for the second half and 20-28 overall, while the Loggers improve their second half record to 5-6 and their overall record to 22-25.
The Chinooks do not return to action until Thursday due to the All Star Break, where they will hit the road to face off against the Wisconsin Woodchucks in game one of a two game series starting at 6:35 pm.
Be sure to check out Matt Johnson as he competes in the NWL Home Run Derby tomorrow night at 6:30 pm, and then tune in to watch Keenan Bartlett, Tim DalPorto, and Marshall Kasowski represent the Chinooks in the NWL All Star Game starting at 7:05 pm on Tuesday.
The Lakeshore Chinooks are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 23rd 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 150 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 (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Lucas Duda (NYM) and Ben Zobrist (CHC). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit http://northwoodsleague.com/lakeshore-chinooks or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store and set the Chinooks as your favorite team.