ROCHESTER, MN- The Waterloo Bucks (28-17) jumped on the scoring barrage first but the Rochester Honkers (22-21) fight back to win an offensive slugfest 11-10 on Thursday, July 13.
Zach Malis set the tone with a leadoff solo homer to right field but Morgan McCullough of the Honkers had the same idea with a leadoff solo blast of his own in the bottom of the first inning tying the game up early 1-1.
The Bucks tried to put the game out of reach in the top of the second on a Rochester error, Malis RBI single, Drew Greenwood RBI groundout, wild pitch and a Charlie Concannon run scoring double. Waterloo led 6-1 but the Honkers cut into that deficit on an RBI double by Michael Echavia, RBI single from Michael Michalak and a two-run homer to right center by Griffin Neuer. After two innings it was clear that both teams were in for a shootout with the Bucks leading 6-5 at the moment.
Jake Viaene crushed a solo home run in the top of the third inning for his first long ball of the season. Malis tallied another RBI on a groundout and then Drew Greenwood punched an RBI single to right putting the Bucks up 9-5 but again the Honkers were ready to answer in their half of the inning.
Both starting pitchers Ryan Thompson for Rochester and Anthony Ruden for Waterloo had to leave because they threw over 35 pitches in the second inning alone. The Honkers answered the three spot by the Bucks with one of their own as the score was 9-8 in favor of Waterloo.
Hunter Sullivan (4-2) worked out of a bases loaded, nobody out jam in the top of the fifth thanks to a double play turned the Honkers infield.
Kenyon Yovan hit a go-ahead two-run homer off of Carlisle Koestler (0-1) to left center handing the Honkers their first lead of the night 10-9 in the bottom of the fifth inning. Yovan contributed again with an RBI double down the left field line tacking on a Rochester insurance run.
The Bucks did not score again until a Joe Genord solo homer to keep Waterloo in it in the top of the ninth but eventually Garrett Cobb (8) settled down to close out the game after both teams hit three home runs but the Honkers outlasted the Bucks 11-10.
Waterloo returns to Riverfront Stadium tomorrow, July 14 for one game against the Rochester Honkers at 6:35 p.m. on Panther Pride Night.
The Waterloo Bucks are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The 23-year-old summer collegiate 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 160 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including two-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champion Ben Zobrist (CHC) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM) and Lucas Duda (NYM). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.waterloobucks.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Bucks as your favorite team.