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Woodchucks Sweep MoonDogs with 5-2 Victory

Mankato, Minn. – The Wisconsin Woodchucks came into Franklin Rogers Park needing to win out to make the playoffs. Despite being eliminated, the Woodchucks put up a fight, sweeping the MoonDogs with a 5-2 victory at Franklin Rogers Park on Saturday evening.

Bryce Shafer (Valparaiso) did his part on the mound for the ‘Chucks, as he threw a complete game while striking out eight to move to 4-3 on the summer. It was the second complete game of the summer.

Chad Wright (Kentucky), Travis Whitmore (Pittsburgh) and Ben Long (UW-Milwaukee) all recorded two hits for the Woodchucks (29-36, 16-15). The two Woodchuck wins marked the first time the MoonDogs were swept at home during 2009.

After the Woodchucks took a 1-0 lead in the first, the MoonDogs (38-28, 15-18) responded for two in the third frame. Taylor Black (Kentucky) singled and stole second before Ryan Durant (Iowa) brought him in with a single. KC Serna (Oregon) came through two batters later with an RBI single to right to give the Dogs their only lead.

The Woodchucks would score the last two runs they would need in the fourth. Trailing 2-1, Long led off the inning with a single up the middle. Richter then followed with a triple to the left center field gap to tie the game. Casey Rihn (South Carolina) followed with a sac fly to center field to give the Woodchucks the winning run.

Eric Fritz (UW-Stevens Point) came around to score on an error by Serna in the fifth and Whitmore brought home Wright with a single down the left field line in the seventh to give the Woodchucks a three-run cushion and final 5-2 margin.

Tony Strazzara (San Diego) was the only MoonDog with multiple hits, going 2-4. Jake Petricka (Indiana State) took the loss on the hill (2-3), lasting seven innings and allowing four earned runs on nine hits.

The MoonDogs will head to La Crosse for the final two regular season games of 2009. First pitch from Copeland Park will be at 5:05 tomorrow evening.

Rochester’s win over St. Cloud Saturday locked in the Honkers for the North Division second half championship. The MoonDogs will be at home for game two of the playoffs on Wednesday.