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Maynard and Crew Fly In Historic Victory

Friday night was an historic night at the Duck Pond as the Mallards knocked off the LaCrosse Loggers 4-2. On a small scale, the Mallards won for just the second time of the season when trailing after five innings. On a larger scale, the win moved them a game ahead of LaCrosse in the race for the second playoff spot in the Northwoods League?s South Division.

The win was the 200th for the franchise, which began play in the Northwoods League in 2001. Prior to the game Mallards mascot, Maynard G. Mallard skydived in with the first pitch (pictured below).

It didn?t look good at the start. After not scoring and leaving 16 runners on base the night before, the Mallards allowed LaCrosse to score first. Catcher Adam Fleener led off the fifth inning with a single against Madison starter Jake Sullivan (top left). He scored on some shoddy defense when the next batter reached on an error by third baseman Randy Molina. Molina mishandled a bunt off the bat of Spencer Lucian. Molina then tried to get Fleener going back to second but threw the ball into center field. Center fielder Danny Dressman then tried to throw out Fleener advancing to third but his throw went into the Mallards dugout, allowing Fleener to score and move Lucian to third.

Fleener would single again in the seventh and eventually score on a single by Andy Podmolik to make the score 2-0 in favor of LaCrosse.

The Mallards finally got on the board in the eighth, ending a 21-inning scoreless streak. Ryan Bond led off the inning with a single. Tommy Lentz? grounder forced Bond out at second, but Lentz was safe on the relay throw. Danny Dressman singled to left to put runners at first and second. Jordan Comadena then singled to left and Lentz was waved around in an attempt to score. Lentz was thrown out by the left fielder Matt Aidem.

The inning wasn?t over, though, as with two outs, Bobby Hubbard hit a line drive to right field that looked like a sure out. However, the right fielder, Travis Check, misjudged the ball and allowed it to go over his head to the wall. Both Dressman and Comadena scored to tie the game at two. Gary Arndt came to the plate and was hit by a pitch. The next batter was Mike Rohde (bottom left). His single past a diving LaCrosse second baseman into center field scored Hubbard and gave the Mallards a 3-2 lead. The Loggers made a pitching change, but Jordan Wolf greeted Ben Mayhew with a single to score Arndt on a close play at the plate and give the Mallards the 4-2 lead. That would be all the Ducks needed.

Craig Meier earned his third victory with two innings of scoreless relief. He didn?t allow any Loggers to reach base while striking out two.

The Mallards are home Saturday to host the Eau Claire Express. It?s Goodman?s Jewelers Diamond Night. The first 1,000 ladies will receive a gemstone and one will be a real diamond! Bring the gemstone to Goodman?s Jewelers to find out if you have won a diamond. Also, Neil Diamond cover band Lightning and Thunder will perform on the Duck Blind after the LifeStyle Staffing Fireworks. The first pitch is scheduled for 6:05 p.m.

Good seats are still available. Order yours now by visiting www.mallardsbaseball.com or calling 246.4277.