Clutch Hitting and Solid Bullpen Leads to Chinooks Victory
Fond du Lac, WI – With two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning and the bases loaded, Joe Gahm was tasked with preserving the one run lead. He was able to get a groundout back to mound to end the threat, helping the Chinooks later win 4-2 over the Dock Spiders.
After relief pitcher Clayton Slifer had loaded the bases with two outs, manager Travis Akre decided to go the bullpen, calling upon Gahm. The Chinooks only lead 3-2 at the time, and the Dock Spiders were threatening to take the lead heading into the eighth inning. But Gahm forced Fond du Lac cleanup hitter Troy Black into a ground ball back to the mound to retire the side.
The Chinooks were able to score first on a one-out single by Ronald Sweeny III in the top of the fifth inning. But any chance to add on more was stifled after Connor Christman popped up to third, stranding a runner on third base.
The game flipped in the bottom half of the fifth after the Dock Spiders scored two runs to take the lead 2-1. Back to back singles by Kiambu Fentress and Mitch Boe put two runners on with one out. After a wild pitch by Chinooks starter Brendan McGuigan, Cole Zabowski singled, scoring the two runners.
McGuigan was lifted after the fifth inning, giving up two runs on seven hits and walk. It was his first start since June 14th that McGuigan was able to pitch into the fifth inning, which coincidently was also against Fond du Lac. The junior right-hander was still able to pick up the win tonight, his second of the season.
After the Dock Spiders put up a two spot in the fifth, the Chinooks answered with two of their own in the sixth to regain the lead. Jack Dunn started the rally with a one out double. Dallas Beaver and Christian Boulware each drew two-out walks to load the bases. Then on a 2-2 count, Griffin Dey singled scoring Dunn and Beaver to give the Chinooks the 3-2 lead.
Lakeshore would add an insurance run in the top of the eighth inning, extending the lead to 4-2. Ronald Sweeny drove in Dallas Beaver with a bases loaded sacrifice fly, but the Chinooks would leave the other two runners stranded after a Connor Christman strikeout. Lakeshore would strand eight runners throughout the night, all in the last five innings.
After getting out of the jam in the seventh, Joe Gahm remained in the game to finish up the two and a third innings. He allowed no baserunners, facing the minimum of seven. He picked up the save, his third on the season, and lowered his ERA to 1.62 over nine games.
The Chinooks return home tomorrow evening for a matchup against the Madison Mallards. It will be the third game in the season series between the two teams, with Madison currently leading 2-0. The first pitch tomorrow night 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.