Late Inning Rally Helps Chinooks Win 4-1 Over Rafters
Wisconsin Rapids, WI – The Chinooks played some small ball in the eighth inning, and with some help from an error by the Rafters defense, broke open the tie game to later win 4-1.
Back to back walks to lead off the eighth inning put pressure on Rafters reliever Jonathan Hernandez to strand the inherited runners. Sebastian Holte-Mancera moved the baserunners over with a sacrifice bunt and Jim Govern did his job with a sacrifice fly to right field. However, an error by Rafters right fielder Brody Wofford on the play allowed a second run to score giving Lakeshore the 3-1 lead.
The Chinooks held a 1-0 until the Rafters tied the game in the fifth inning. With the bases loaded in the first inning, a Christian Boulware single gave the Chinooks the first run of the game, but they couldn’t find a way to score again, stranding two runners.
It was another fantastic pitching performance by Chinooks starter Kevin Tibor throwing seven and third innings only allowing one run. He kept the Rafters offense in check all night, only allowing three hits and walking one. The only mistake he made was to Mike Rojas who lead off the fifth inning with a solo home run. Tibor added seven strikeouts as well.
Tibor’s performance tonight marked the fourth time in five starts he has allowed one or fewer runs. His last start was also against Wisconsin Rapids and he shut them out over seven innings in a 9-4 win. He lowered his season ERA to 1.31 and picked up his third win of the season tonight.
For Wisconsin Rapids, starting pitcher Gareth Stroh had another solid start. He allowed only one run over five innings, giving up four hits and walking three. In four starts this season Stroh has yet to allow more than two earned runs, but he fell to 1-2 after the loss.
The Chinooks added an insurance run in the top of the ninth inning on a Dallas Beaver groundout to first base. Once again though the Rafters defense failed to help their pitcher as two errors in the inning put two different Chinooks batters on base.
Joe Gahm entered for the Chinooks after Tibor was removed, pitching the last one and two thirds innings. He struggled with his control a little bit, walking two batters in the ninth inning and giving the Rafters a chance to make some noise, but Mitch Mallek bounced out to second to end the game.
The Chinooks return home tomorrow to take on the Rafters in game two of the home and home series. Brendan McGuigan will start tomorrow for Lakeshore after he was scheduled to pitch on Monday but the cancelled game pushed back his start. First pitch tomorrow evening will be at 6:35 PM.
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.