The Waterloo Bucks (23-11) closed out their incredible first half with 23 wins, second-most in franchise history, as they fell 8-4 at the hands of the La Crosse Loggers (14-22) on Monday night in Waterloo. Winning the division by 10.0 games, the First Half Great Plains-East Champion Bucks received multi-hit performances by Liam Critchett (2-for-3, BB, 2 RBI), Josh Kasevich (2-for-5, R, RBI) and Emi Gonzalez (2-for-4) in the loss.
Trailing 6-0 in the fourth, Garrett McGowan (1-for-3, BB, HBP, 2 R) drew a walk to open the Bucks’ half of the frame followed by a Kasevich single roped into right. Gonzalez singled to third, loading the bases, then two batters later Critchett bounced a broken-bat two-run single over the second baseman’s head.
The Bucks tallied another in the fifth to cut their deficit to 6-3 as Jalen Smith (1-for-4, BB, R) took ball four, moved to second on a McGowan single then scored on a Kasevich RBI single ripped into center.
Waterloo’s final run came across in the seventh. McGowan was hit by a pitch and stole second, then Gonzalez reached on a single to third that saw the Loggers’ hot-corner defender fire the ball into the party deck, allowing the former to score.
Decker Stedman and Zach Carrell each worked scoreless frames in the eighth and ninth, while Brycen Mautz fired 3.0 innings of four-hit, zero-walk baseball in relief. Mautz punched out three and allowed just one earned run.
Waterloo opens the second half on the road in Mankato on Tuesday, July 6 with a 6:35 p.m. first pitch against the MoonDogs.