Chinooks Come Back From 9-0 Deficit, Beat Woodchucks 17-9
Wausau, WI–The Lakeshore Chinooks defeated the Wisconsin Woodchucks 17-9 on Tuesday night to improve to 13-15 on the season.
This was a wild one.
After a scoreless first inning, it went off the rails for the Chinooks in the bottom of the second. After the Woodchucks first two hitters reached on consecutive errors by Chinook shortstop, Royce Ando, and starting pitcher, Luke Sommerfeld, six of the next eight batters reached base in one way or another before Sommerfeld had to be pulled for Cyrillo Watson.
Watson, who missed his Saturday start due to an illness, picked up right where Sommerfeld left off. The first pitch he threw was deposited high over the left field wall for a grand slam by Dalton Reed to make it 9-0 Woodchucks.
After a four-pitch walk and two passed balls in subsequent at-bats, it looked like the Chinooks would never get out of the second, but eventually, Watson got Trey Dawson to fly out to the warning track and keep the deficit at nine.
Most teams would’ve packed it in for the night—especially, considering it was the team’s 16th game in as many days—but Lakeshore was just getting started.
Chinook first baseman, Daniel DeSimone, got the scoring underway in the top of the third when he, on a 1-0 count, launched a high, inside fastball well into the Wausau evening sky.
Then, in the fourth, Nick Gatewood started things off with a single and was quickly brought home by Jacob Richardson who added to the home run party with a two-run shot to make it 9-3.
With two outs in the fourth, Lakeshore started another rally, and DeSimone— again—was the one to answer the call. He lined a double into the right field then was brought home when Drake Lubin went opposite field for a double of his own. Then, Lubin came around to score when fellow speedster, Matthew Mika, knocked the third double in a row to an almost identical spot. All good things come in threes, and after four, it was 9-5 Woodchucks, but the Chinooks had life.
The scoring got back underway in the sixth when back to back walks by Caleb Dean, and Ando set up—guess who—DeSimone who registered his third hit of the night and loaded the bases for Lubin. Lubin produced a RBI single, Mika a RBI walk, Rylan Thomas a two-RBI fielder’s choice and Nick Gatewood a RBI single to give the Chinooks their first lead of the night, 10-9, after six innings.
Two more crossed the plate for the Chinooks in the seventh. After DeSimone led-off with a single, Thomas came through with a one-out, two-RBI double to score him and Lubin to make it 12-9 Chinooks.
On the other side of the ball, Chinook pitching settled in and dominated. Watson, a starter making an infrequent relief appearance, worked three scoreless innings before handing it off to Marshall Oetting who effortlessly collected three scoreless of his own.
The Chinooks had one final scoring spree in the top of the ninth before things were said and done. A Gatewood double scored two, Dean tacked on two more with a single and Ando brought home the 17th, and final run with a sac fly to center.
Finally, in the bottom of the ninth, Joe Heinemann came on, shut the door and would send the Woodchucks back to their Wausau homes to wonder why their wood bats couldn't chuck up enough runs to outlast the Chinooks on Wednesday eve.
The Chinooks get back underway tomorrow for game two against the Woodchucks. Zach Spears takes the mound for first pitch at 6:35!
The Lakeshore Chinooks are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The 23-year-old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 20 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 170 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including two-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champion Ben Zobrist (CHC) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM) and Lucas Duda (NYM). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.lakeshorechinooks.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Chinooks as your favorite team.