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Published On: June 22nd, 2017


Nunez Drives in Winning Run as Chucks Complete Comeback

Tim Hackett, Broadcasting Intern

Wausau, Wis.- The Wisconsin Woodchucks very nearly pulled off a nine-run comeback on Wednesday. They trailed by two runs late in the game Thursday and this time, the comeback was completed. Down 4-2 in the bottom of the eighth inning, the Woodchucks (9-14) struck for three runs in the frame, and then the best closer in the league did his job to clinch a 5-4 victory over the Kalamazoo Growlers (6-17).

Austin Lambright started his Woodchucks debut with a perfect first, but the Growlers got to him in the second when James Sullivan reached on an infield single and came around to score on an error. Wisconsin bounced right back in the bottom half, however. Ivan Nunez led off with a walk and two batters later Aaron Soucy hit a home run, his second in as many starts, to give the Chucks a 2-1 lead.

The lead didn’t last long as Kalamazoo levelled it up when Connor Hollis reached on a single and then scored on a double play hit into by Charlie Carpenter in the third. The Growlers then regained the lead in the fifth when Ivan Estrella singled home Jack Duffy and extended the lead in the sixth when Hollis reached and later scored on separate errors.

JR Holloway pitched well in his first start of the season but his bullpen let him down. Hayden Brauser pitched a scoreless seventh and tried to shut Wisconsin down in the eighth as well, but he could not. With one out, Yeager Taylor singled and Stevie Mangrum hit the first Wisconsin triple of the season to the right field corner to make it 4-3. Dalton Reed would’ve hit a game-tying sacrifice fly, but Growler left fielder Jeff Riedel charged into the gap and had the ball bounce off his glove, letting Mangrum score and Reed get to second. Then up stepped Ivan Nunez, who mashed a double to left field off of Ryan Franklin to give the Woodchucks a lead.

It didn’t look like he would be needed, but Orsen Josephina was summoned from the bullpen with his team up by one. On just six pitches, he got a lineout and two groundouts to quickly tally his league-leading eighth save of the season in just nine chances, icing the 5-4 comeback Chucks win.

The Woodchucks embark on a three-game road trip Friday night as they head out to Kenosha to take on the Kingfish for the first time this season. Gordon Cardenas will make his fifth start of the year for Wisconsin, with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 PM.  

Tickets are on sale to all Wisconsin Woodchucks home games and the 2017 Northwoods League Home Run Derby and All-Star Game, presented by Ascension. Tickets can be purchased online, by calling 715.845.5055 or by stopping by the Woodchucks front office during normal business hours.