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Published On: July 5th, 2014

A passed ball in Waterloo gives the Bucks a win in game one over Honkers 

(Rochester, Minn.)–  The Honkers dropped game one of the Fourth of July doubleheader, 4-3, to the Bucks in Waterloo on Friday.

Averaging eight runs over their last five games, the Honkers were challenged to carry that momentum to Waterloo against one of the league’s best pitchers, Adam Bray (South Dakota State). The Honkers sent one of their best to the mound Saturday, too. Starter Seth Holbert did his best to minimize some early troubles and keep Rochester in the game throughout his fourth start of the season.

In the second inning, Holbert allowed a leadoff double to Connor McClain (Indiana State) who scored on a two-out single from Mikal Hill (North Carolina at Charlotte).

Bray was tough on the mound, but gave the Honkers a chance to tie in the top of the fourth after Connor Schaefbauer (Minnesota) and Alex Schultz (Nebraska Omaha) led the inning off with back-to-back singles with just one out. Bray would pitch out of it, maintaining the one-run lead.

Holbert had settled in until the bottom of the fifth inning when he allowed a leadoff single to second baseman Pat MacKenzie (Central Michigan). A sacrifice bunt and a stolen base moved MacKenzie to third base, and field manager Matt Bowman elected to use Nick Highberger (Creighton) out of the bullpen to record the inning’s final out. But Will Sparks (Washington) came through for the Bucks with a single, scoring MacKenzie and the Honkers trailed Waterloo, 2-0.

In the top of the sixth inning, the Honkers rallied to take the lead late in the game. Three straight singles loaded the bases for first baseman John Schuknecht (Cal Poly) with one out. Schuknecht grounded a ball back to reliever J.D. Moore (South Dakota State) but a fielding error allowed the Honkers to grab their first run of the game. Casey Fletcher (Illinois) followed Schuknecht and singled in two more runs and boosted the Honkers to a 3-2 lead.

The Bucks answered the Honkers’ rally quickly, however, in the bottom of the sixth inning. Three consecutive singles from the Bucks tied the game at three with reliever Highberger pitching.

So, the first game of the day’s doubleheader would require extra innings after a scoreless seventh inning for both teams.

A baserunning error in the top of the eighth inning halted the best chance for the Honkers to score in extras. And in the bottom of the inning the Bucks scored the game-winning run to score from third base on a passed ball and win the game, 4-3.

The Honkers and Bucks are set to play the second game of the day at 9:15 p.m., tentatively. Will Bamesberger (Creighton) will start his second game of the season for the Honkers.


The Rochester Honkers 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), Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (STL) and Ben Zobrist (TB). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League YouTube channel.  For more information,