Battle Creek, MI – Alex Stevenson continued to be a hot hitter for the Chinooks as he drove in three runs en route to a 5-3 victory over the Battle Creek Bombers.
Lakeshore was able to jump on the board early against Bombers starting pitcher Anthony Brophy. The Chinooks put together five hits and three runs in the second inning, including the Stevenson two-out, two-RBI single. Web Charles singled and drove in his first run of the season to get the scoring started against Brophy.
In the fourth, the Chinooks added two more after Takahiro Yamada led off the inning with a triple. Charles added his second RBI with a groundout to short that allowed Yamada to score. Back to back singles by Connor Christman and Mike Aiello, put runners on the corners with one out for Stevenson. A sacrifice fly by Stevenson gave Lakeshore a 5-1 lead in the fourth inning.
Chinooks pitcher Heath Renz got his second start of the season looking to follow up on his great first start of the season. However, Renz was only able to make it through four and two thirds innings, as he was lifted after walking the bases loaded in the bottom of the fifth. The UW-Whitewater product was able to contain the Bombers offense though, only allowing one run in the second inning.
The Bombers added a run off of Chinooks reliever Brandon Komar, who was making his first appearance of the season. A one-out double by left-fielder Connor Bailey followed by a single from Jalen Thomas cut the Chinooks lead to 5-2 in the seventh inning.
The damage could have been worse, however, as the Bombers stranded 11 runners in the game. Chinooks pitchers were excellent at pitching out of jams throughout the night, but often times they put themselves in those tough situations. Battle Creek drew eight walks against Chinooks pitchers, which contributed to the many chances the Bombers had throughout the game.
Lakeshore had a chance to extend their lead in the ninth inning, but Carter Bair continued his strong showing in relief for the Bombers. Bair threw three shutout innings after taking over for Brophy, allowing only one hit and walking two. He was able to work around a walk and a hit batter in the ninth to keep the Chinooks lead at 5-2 entering the bottom of the ninth.
Heading to the bottom of the ninth, Konnor Ash came in to pitch for the Chinooks. After giving up a leadoff single, a wild pitch and passed ball put the runner on third. Another passed ball charged to catcher Mike Aiello, scored a run for the Bombers, cutting the lead to 5-3. Ash was able to settle down after the early issues, retiring three consecutive batters and stranding a run on second to record the save for the Chinooks.
Chinooks reliever Nick Campe picked up the win, while Brophy was charged with the loss.
The Chinooks remain in Battle Creek for the second game of their two day road trip. First pitch will be at 6:05 pm. Lakeshore will return home for an early game on Wednesday against Green Bay with the first pitch of that game coming at 11:35 am.
The Lakeshore Chinooks are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Now in its 25th anniversary season, the Northwoods 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 190 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (TOR). 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.