Honkers earn series split in Thunder Bay
(Rochester, Minn.)— The Rochester Honkers defeated the Thunder Bay Border Cats 6-3 Friday night in Thunder Bay, Canada, splitting the series in their first trip north of the border. Josh Pigg (Hawaii) earned the win for Rochester after allowing just one run in five innings pitched. Spencer Greer (Dixie State) threw the final three innings without giving up a hit or a walk to get his fifth save of the season. Zach Thiac (Nicholls State) was charged with the loss for Thunder Bay.
Cole Krzmarzick (Nevada) was 3-4 at the plate for Rochester, with two RBIs and a run scored.
Thunder Bay took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second, but the Honkers responed as Ryan Webberley (Cal Poly Pomona) scored the tying run on Miles Mastrobuoni’s (College of San Mateo) sacrifice fly.
Ryan Summers (Louisville) and Adam Walton (Illinois) both reached base on Border Cat errors in the fourth inning and scored on Krzmarzick’s single for the Honkers go-ahead runs and a 3-1 lead. That lead extended to 4-1 as Alex Schultz (Nebraska-Omaha) scored on a sacrifice fly by Summers.
Thunder Bay closed the gap to one with a pair of runs scored in the sixth against Rochester reliever Matt Walker (UCLA), but that was all the closer they would get.
In the top of the ninth, Joe DeRoche-Duffin, who had been a late scratch from Rochester’s starting lineup, came in to pinch hit for Bram Grooten (Wentworth Institute) with Krzmarzick on second and one out. Duiffin was intentionally walked by Thunder Bay and Jayson Yano (Stevens Institute) came in as a pinch runner. Yano and Krzmarzick both scored on a double from Schultz, giving the Honkers all the insurance they needed as Thunder Bay was able to get just one base runner against Greer in his three innings of work, securing the 6-3 victory.
The Honkers will travel to Duluth tomorrow for two games against the Huskies as they continue to battle for the North division first half title. Matt Fiedler (Minnesota) is scheduled to start for Rochester on the mound.
The Honkers will be back in Rochester on Tuesday, June 30th, to face the Waterloo Bucks at 12:05 p.m. at Mayo Field. It will be Kids 3 Buck Day, presented by Perkins, where all kids 12 and under can get into the game for just three dollars. It will be the first game of a split double header. The second game will be in Waterloo at 7:05 that night. These will be the first two games in the Honkers' and Bucks' competition for the Scheel's Highway 63 Cup this season. The Cup is awarded to the winner of the season series between Rochester and Waterloo.
You can follow all the Honkers action on Sports Radio AM 1520 The Ticket with Clinton Cole, and on the Northwoods League Live stream, which can be found at northwoodsleague.com. Just click on the Watch Games Live link.
The Rochester Honkers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 22nd season of summer collegiate baseball in 2015, 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 120 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 (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Lucas Duda (NYM) and Ben Zobrist (OAK). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League Website. For more information, visit www.rochesterhonkers.com