In the third game of their Canada trip, the Rochester Honkers (20-19, 2-3) got the early lead against the Thunder Bay Border Cats (18-19, 1-4) but fell 7-6 in extra innings. The Honkers seemed to have a strong hold on the game from an early stage, but they couldn’t hold on to the victory.
The Honkers got the scoring started in the second inning. Andrew Guidara (Westmont College) hit an infield single up the middle, which brought home one run. The throw to first was way wide, and it got past Brayden Kuriger (Nicholls State), and another run came in, giving the Honkers an early 2-0 lead.
In the next inning, Paul Schoenfeld (Colorado Mesa) was on second base with two outs, and Kimo Fukofuka (San Jose State) singled him in to put the Honkers up by three.
The Honkers’ starter, Will Lavin (Bemidji State), was cruising through four but had trouble in the fifth. The sun at Port Arthur Stadium was terrible on Saturday, especially in left field. Thunder Bay loaded the bases with two outs, and Logan Johnstone (Washington State) hit a lazy fly ball into left that Schoenfeld couldn’t see.
]The ball got down as he lost it in the sun, and it rolled to the wall. When the dust cleared, Johnstone stood on third base with a 3-run triple. The game was tied 3-3.
In the top of the sixth, Kyle Fossum (Washington) doubled home Fukofuka, but the Border Cats tied it up in the bottom of the inning with an RBI single by Tyler Kehoe (South Alabama). Then, Thunder Bay took its first lead of the series in the seventh inning when Johnstone brought home Travis Chestnut (Texas A&M) on a sacrifice fly.
Rochester scored a run in the eighth to tie the game up, and neither team could score in the ninth, so the game headed into extras.
Fukofuka doubled home Ben North (Creighton) for his third hit of the game to give the Honkers the lead. In the bottom of the inning, Kehoe singled home Zane Skansi (Creighton) to tie the game at 6-6.
Patrick Engskov (Oklahoma) walked to get Skansi into scoring position. Trey Lewis (South Alabama) stepped to the plate with two on and two outs and smacked a single underneath Carson Steven’s (Cal Poly) glove at third base and sent it into left field. Skanski scored easily from the second, and Thunder Bay notched their first win of the second half.
The Honkers finish their series against Thunder Bay Sunday afternoon at Port Arthur Stadium. First pitch is at 1:35 p.m.
The Rochester Honkers began their 30th season of play on May 29th. Keep up with the team on social media by following them on Twitter (@RochHonkers) and Instagram (@honkersbaseball) and like the Honkers on Facebook at Rochester Honkers Baseball Club. Interact on social by using the hashtag #FunForTheWholeFlock!
The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Now in its’ 30th season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 24 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, over 310 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time All-Star and 2016 Roberto Clemente Award winner Curtis Granderson, three-time Cy Young Award winner and World Series Champion Max Scherzer (NYM), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS). As well as 2019 Rookie of the Year and 2019/2021 Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and 2021 All-Star, MLB Gold Glove winner and 2019 Second Team All-MLB shortstop Marcus Semien (TEX). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website at watchnwl.com and on ESPN+. For more information, visit www.northwoodsleague.com or download the Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play.