Chinooks Stave Off Mallards’ Rally to Take Opener
By Peter Geppert
Madison, WI – August 5, 2012. Despite a valiant comeback effort by the Madison Mallards (18-10, 34-29) in which they scored the final four runs of the game, Chinooks closer Tyler Sparger (Indian Hills CC) was able to come in and squeak out an 8-7 Lakeshore Chinooks (15-13, 32-31) win. With the victory the Chinooks took the opener of the five game series.
The Chinooks started fast, putting up two runs in the first inning with a pair of RBI hits. Right fielder Forrest Chadwick (Southern Maine) put the first run on the board with a double that scored center fielder Charlie Markson (Notre Dame) from second. First baseman Ryan Krill (Michigan State) added the second run with a line drive single that brought Chadwick home.
The Mallards answered back to tie the game in the bottom half of the inning with a two out, two run homer by first baseman Jeff Zimmerman (Northern Illinois).
The Mallards scored again with a two out rally in the third inning when third baseman Nicholas Howard (Virginia) doubled home left fielder Derek Fisher (Virginia) to deliver a 3-2 lead.
Chinooks catcher Connor Lynch (Georgia Tech) responded to tie the game in the fourth inning with an RBI double, scoring designated hitter Michael Jurgella (St. Cloud State) from third.
The Chinooks retook the lead in the fifth inning with a two RBI double from third baseman Cody Yount (Virginia Commonwealth) off of Mallards starter Trevor Foss (Texas A&M-Corpus Christi) to make the score 5-3.
Chadwick continued his big day at the plate in the sixth inning, breaking the game open with a three run homer to extend the Chinook’s lead to five runs.
The Mallards narrowed their deficit to four runs in the bottom half of the frame with a solo shot by Howard, his sixth of the season.
In the seventh inning the Mallards continued to capitalize on two opportunities, scoring two runs on back-to-back RBI hits by Fisher and Howard to bring themselves back to being down two runs.
Mallards right fielder Tyler Marincov (North Florida) brought the Mallards to within one run in the eighth inning with a towering solo shot off of Sparger (2-4).
The comeback effort would fall short though; when Sparger got Howard to ground out to end the game and pick up his seventh save of the season.
Foss (3-8) took his eighth loss of the season tonight, giving up five runs on six hits while striking out four.
Chinook’s starter Jason Hoppe (Minnesota State) earned the win, surrendering six runs on eight hits while striking out six through 6.2 innings.
News and Notes:
With his two run homer in the first inning, Zimmerman set the new Mallards franchise record for RBIs in a single season with 49.
Despite grounding out to the end the game, Howard finished a triple short of the cycle, going 4-for-5 with two singles, a double, and a home run.
With the loss tonight and a 4-3 win by the Wisconsin Woodchucks (24-3, 41-21), the Mallards were officially eliminated from playoff contention.
Tonight’s attendance was 6,728.
The Mallards continue their five game series with the Chinooks tomorrow, August 6th. That night will be Jon Lancaster Toyota Baseball Card Night at the ballpark.
The 2012 season is upon us! Single-game tickets are on-sale for all Mallards home games!
The Madison Mallards are part of the 16-team Northwoods League. The Northwoods League has more teams, plays more games, and draws more fans than any other Summer Collegiate League in North America.