Late Inning Rally Leads Express Past Honkers
(Rochester, Minn.) – The Eau Claire Express scored two runs in the eighth and ninth innings to sneak by the Rochester Honkers 5-2 on Sunday afternoon at Mayo Field. The Express improved their record to 11-15 while the Honkers fall to 13-13.
Rochester Honkers starting pitcher Chad Tworek (Keiser) twirled a dominant seven inning performance. He allowed one run on eight hits but the run was not an earned run. Additionally, Tworek struck out three and did not surrender a walk. Michael Brandt (Augustana) was tagged with his second loss of the year as he worked one inning giving up two runs on two hits. Kevin West (UC Riverside) came in relief to give up two runs on two hits in an inning of work.
The Honkers got on the board in the first as Mike Peabody (UC Irvine) came around to score on a wild pitch. Later in the inning, Nate Webb (UC Riverside) scored on a throwing error to give Rochester a 2-0 lead.
Noah Sifrit (Oklahoma State) got a run back for Eau Claire in the fifth as he came around to score on the Honkers first error of the game.
Eau Claire tied the game at two in the eighth as Tommy Gilman (Midland) grounded into a double play to bring in the equalizing run. The Express took a 3-2 lead as Andrew Pratt (Lubbock Christian) was able to steal home.
The Express added some insurance runs in the ninth as Scott Ogrin (Cal Poly) hit a two-run home run to give Eau Claire a 5-2 lead. For Ogrin, it was his fourth home run in six games.
Tyler Strzelczyk (MATC) was the winning pitcher for the Express. Strzelczyk threw 2 2/3 scoreless innings and struck out one. He now has a 1-0 record.
The Honkers are back at Mayo Field on Monday at 7:05 p.m. for a two-game series with the Willmar Stingers. Monday, is Christmas in June Night, also Bob The Bug Man will begin his “Swatter Series.” Darin Kilfoyl (Saint Johns River State) is scheduled to start for Rochester. Kilfoyl has a 1-0 record and is yet to give up a run through 14 1/3 innings. Trevor Divinski (Minnesota State) is scheduled to start for the Stingers, he has a 2-1 record and a 1.82 ERA.
The Rochester Honkers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Now in its 25th anniversary season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 20 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 190 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (TOR). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.rochesterhonkers.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Honkers as your favorite team.