Published On: June 22nd, 2021

By: Larry Larson

After finding themselves in an early hole once again, the Rockford Rivets roared back to beat the Kokomo Jackrabbits 16-8 on Monday night at Rivets Stadium to end a four game losing streak.

With the win, the Rivets move to 9-12 on the season and end Kokomo’s four game win streak.

Rivets starter Payton Hutchings (Fr, Illinois) let up five runs in the first three innings, creating an early 5-0 deficit. However, in the bottom of the 3rd, Rockford would turn the tables.

After striking out five batters in his first two innings, Jackrabbits starter Evan Elliott (R-Fr, Iowa) hit Josue Urdeneta (R-Fr, Indiana State) and Tyeler Hawkins (R-Fr, Louisville) and issued a walk to Daniel Cantu (R-Fr, South Florida) to open the 3rd.

Urdeneta would score on a wild pitch, before Phil Matulia (Jr, Louisiana Tech) would walk to re-load the bases. After Adam Christopher (Fr, Loyola-Marymount) relieved Elliot, he issued back-to-back bases loaded walks to Brian Fuentes (R-Fr, Indiana State) and Brody Harding (So, Illinois) to trim the Kokomo deficit to 5-3 with Jared Cushing (R-Fr, Xavier) at the plate.

After Cushing battled to a full count, he drove a towering fly ball over the left field wall to give the Rivets the lead on a go-ahead grand slam.

The Jackrabbits wouldn’t go down easy, scoring a run in the 4th and 2 in the 6th to retake the lead, 8-7.

The Rivets could reclaim the advantage in the 6th thanks to an RBI single by Wade Elliot (So, Louisiana Tech) and a two-RBI knock by Harding.

Rockford would break things wide open in the bottom of the 7th, scoring 6 runs on 4 hits and 3 walks to push the lead to 16-8.

Tucker Shalley (Fr, Illinois) extended his scoreless innings streak to 7.1 with a scoreless 8th inning, and Ben Vitas (Fr, Central Michigan) ended the game with a scoreless 9th to end the Rivets’ skid.

Rockford and Kokomo will finish the two game series tomorrow night at 6:05 at Rivets Stadium.

The Rockford Rivets are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Having completed its’ 27th season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 22 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 250 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 (WAS), 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 Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and MLB Gold Glove finalist and 2019 Second Team All-MLB shortstop Marcus Semien (TOR). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Rivets as your favorite team.

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