Chinooks Rally and Walk It Off
By Deann Davidson
Mequon, WI – The Chinooks faced the first-place Madison Mallards at home and after falling behind in the first inning, were able to come back in the final two innings and defeat the Mallards.
Parker Coyne took the mound for the Chinooks with a 4.12 ERA and 29 strikeouts coming into the game. Quinn Gudaitis started for the Mallards and had 15 walks and a 4.37 ERA in 24 and 2/3 innings of play.
Madison got to Coyne quickly. Leadoff hitter EJ Ranel reached on an infield single and Ben Anderson followed with a liner into right. With no outs, Justice Bigbie hit an RBI-single to score Ranel. Coyne got the next batter to line out, but Andrew Nnebe got an RBI-single into left and the Mallards led 2-0 before the Chinooks even stepped up to the plate. Lakeshore threatened to score in the bottom of the inning after Nathan Aide singled with two outs and Griffin Doersching advanced Aide to third with another single. However, Jake Thompson grounded out to short and stranded the runners.
Coyne settled down in the second inning, facing the minimum while striking out two. In Lakeshore’s next ups, Daryl Myers singled to center and Jeff Holtz grounded one through shortstop and third to give Lakeshore runners at first and second, but they failed to score after Cole Barr flew out to right field.
Both teams went down in order in the third and the Chinooks’ defense kept Madison from scoring in the fourth with a runner on second. Jake Thompson got a leadoff single and David Dunn hit a fly to left that dropped to put two runners on with no outs. Myers advanced the runners with a groundout down the first base line. Justin Olson cut the Chinooks’ deficit in half with an RBI-sacrifice fly to score Thompson. Lakeshore had a chance to tie it on a past ball, but it bounced back to the Mallards’ catcher and Holtz was tagged out at home and the score was 2-1.
Neither team scored again until the top of the eighth inning when James Hurlbert relieved Parker Coyne who had recovered from his rough start and tallied eight strikeouts and issued no walks on the night. With one out, Hurlbert walked two batters and Drew Williams followed with a single to left that scored Drew Benefield to give Madison a two-run lead. Timo Schau followed with a single to left that loaded the bases with one out. Ryan Schmit then came in to relieve Hurlbert and the first batter he faced hit a sacrifice fly to make it a 4-1 game. Pinch hitter Logan Michaels came to the base and hit a bases-clearing double into center and the Mallards led by five in the middle of the eighth inning.
In the bottom of the inning, Barr struck out and then Mike Trautwein walked. Aide then blasted a two-run homer over the left field wall to make it a 6-3 ball game. Doersching followed with a homer of his own and the Chinooks only trailed by two. After allowing back-to-back home runs, Tanner Bradley relieved Nick Morales and got Thompson to fly out to right field for the second out. Bradley then issued consecutive walks to Dunn and Myers. Olson came through with a liner to score Dunn, but after Holtz struck out, Lakeshore trailed Madison 6-5.
Madison didn’t score in the ninth and the Chinooks had a chance. Barr hit a grounder up the middle and beat the throw to give Lakeshore a leadoff runner. Trautwein bunted, attempting to advance Barr, but an overthrow to first allowed Barr to score and tie the game at six and put the winning run at third. The Mallards intentionally walked Aide and Doersching to load the bases and then sent in Aiden Tyrell to relieve Bradley. Thompson flew out to left center but it wasn’t deep enough to score the run. Dunn sent a pop fly to shallow right field and that was dropped and Trautwein beat the force out at home to score and give the Chinooks the win with a final score of 7-6.
This was the Chinooks’ fifth win in a row and they are now 16-19 and sitting in fourth place in the Great Lakes West Division. They trail the third-place Wisconsin Woodchucks by one game. They will play the Mallards again tomorrow afternoon with first pitch at 1:35 p.m.
The Lakeshore Chinooks are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 22 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, over 200 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.