Madison, WI – June 23, 2016. When the Madison Mallards (14-9) and Wisconsin Woodchucks (11-10) last met for a two-game series on June 12th and 13th, 20 total runs were scored in the two games, seeing each team take a game. Tonight would see a little more offensive firepower than the last matchup did, as Madison and Wisconsin combined for 17 runs in a single evening, as the Woodchucks topped the Mallards by a score of 10-7.
The Woodchucks would jump on Madison starter Heath Renz (UW-Whitewater) early, scoring four runs in the top of the first. He would get through the next two innings unharmed, as a Josh Stowers (Louisville) RBI single cut the Woodchucks lead to 4-1. That would set the stage for Sam Armstrong (Jacksonville) in the third frame.
With the Mallards down three, Armstrong would launch his fifth home run of 2016 to dead centerfield, tying the game at four in the early portion of the contest. The two opponents would trade runs in the coming innings, finding the score tied at five as both Renz and Woodchucks starter Robert Zeigler (Kent State) would exit the game.
Westin Wuethrich (Washington) relieved Renz to begin the sixth, working for his second night in a row. The right-hander would only see two batters, allowing two hits, before Mitch Vogrin (Illinois State) would enter. When the inning was over, the Mallards found themselves down a run off a Steele Walker (Oklahoma) RBI single to the left side.
Wisconsin would bring in Brandon Lambright (Abilene Christian) to pitch, and he would turn in a gem in relief. The Woodchucks were able to quiet the Mallards bats in the 6th, 7th, and 8th innings, all while working with a slim one-run cushion.
Ty Pennington (Nevada-Reno) would pitch the late innings for the Mallards, striking out three in scoreless 7th and 8th frames. Coming back out down a run in the 9th, Pennington would allow three runs on four hits before giving way to Chase Hoag (Fresno State), who would escape any further trouble.
Madison was able to get one back in the 9th, as Nick Roark (Oral Roberts) hit his first home run of the season off of Lambright. The two-out long ball wasn’t enough, as the Mallards would fall for the ninth time this summer.
Wuethrich was charged with the loss, his first of the season. Robert Ziegler picked up the win, as Lambright earned the three-inning save.
Roark, Armstrong, and Bryce Carter (Stanford) all hit home runs for the green and gold, with Carter joining Roark with home run number one of 2016. After failing to continue his streak of reaching base safely in every game of 2016 last night, Armstrong was able to bounce back with a player-of-the-game performance, going 2-3 with a home run, three RBIs and two runs scored.
The Mallards will be back at the Duck Pond tomorrow, June 24th, to take on the Wisconsin Woodchucks for game two of this two-game set. The game is at 7:05 pm and will feature the ZOOperstars. The contest will also be Sun Prairie St. Mary’s Emergency Center Night. Tickets are available for purchase by visiting MallardsBaseball.com, calling the Mallards ticket office at 608-246-4277, or stopping in the ticket office at 2920 N Sherman Ave.
The Madison Mallards are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 23rd 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 150 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Lucas Duda (NYM) and Ben Zobrist (CHC). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.mallardsbaseball.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store and set the Mallards as your favorite team.