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Mallards Sign Trio from Northwestern

Madison, Wis. – The Madison Mallards have announced the signing of left-handed pitcher Matt Portland, catcher Scott Heelan, and infielder Cody Stevens from Northwestern University.

Portland, a 6’3”, 220-pound sophomore from Victor, New York will come to Madison following his second season with the Wildcats. So far, in 2014 he is 1-4 with a 4.72 ERA and 28 strikeouts in 40 innings pitched.  He has made seven appearances, including six starts.

As a freshman in 2013, Portland went 2-3 with a 4.76 ERA in 28.1 innings pitched. He starred as a prep at Victor High School where he finished his varsity career with a perfect 25-0 record that included 1st team all-state selections following his junior and senior seasons. As senior we went 10-0 with a 0.80 ERA and 108 strikeouts in 52.2 innings pitched while leading his team to a 2nd place finish in the state tournament. His junior season saw him go 10-0 with a 1.24 ERA and 107 strikeouts in 68 innings pitched and finished with a state championship.  Portland is the cousin of New York Yankees pitcher Phil Hughes.

Heelan, a 5’10”, 180-pound catcher will spend his first summer in the Northwoods League after completing his second season at Northwestern.  He spent his freshman and sophomore years at Virginia Tech.  In 2014, Heelan is hitting .263 with one home run and 15 RBIs.  He has started all 24 games he has appeared in.  In 2013 he led the team in both hitting (.366) and on-base percentage (.448).  He finished with two home runs and ten RBIs while playing in 32 games, including 26 starts.

He saw limited action in his two years at Virginia Tech before transferring to Northwestern.  Heelan, originally from Gurnee, Illinois played at Warren Township High School where he was an all-conference and all-area player as a junior and senior.  He was named 2nd team all-state following his senior season when he led his team to a state tournament berth.

Stevens, a 5’9”, 155-pound infielder from Glenview, Illinois will join the Mallards after his third season playing at Northwestern and fourth overall.  He is currently hitting .276 with seven RBIs and has started every game for the Wildcats.  He red-shirted in 2013 due to injury.  As a sophomore in 2012 he hit .235 with a .978 fielding percentage.  He appeared in 36 games with 14 starts.  As a freshman he hit .171 in limited action.

Stevens attended Glenview South High School where he was a three time letter winner and team captain. He is the son of Northwestern head coach Paul Stevens.

The Mallards host their season opener on Tuesday, May 27th at 7:05 pm when they take on the Kalamazoo Growlers.  Mallards single game tickets go on-sale on April 26th at 9:00 am.  Tickets will be available by visiting MallardsBaseball.com or calling the Mallards ticket office at 608-246-4277.

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The Madison Mallards are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 21st season of summer collegiate baseball, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 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 115 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (DET) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (STL) and Ben Zobrist (TB). All league games are viewable live and free of charge via the Northwoods League YouTube channel.  For more information, visit MallardsBaseball.com.