Madison Hitters Combine for Three Homers, Pitchers Combine for One Hit Allowed
Tim Hackett, Broadcasting Intern
Madison, Wis.- The Wisconsin Woodchucks have struggled in the first inning this season, but they actually outscored the Madison Mallards in the first on Sunday afternoon. The problem, however, was that the Chucks (9-17) had zero hits after the first, and the Mallards (14-12) hit three home runs to race out to a 9-2 win.
In a game featuring two relief pitchers making their first starts of the year, the Woodchucks got off on the right foot against Davis Moore in the first. Trey Dawson led off with a walk and stole second, and Tristan Clarke followed with a single to put men at the corners with no outs. Moore then issued a wild pitch, allowing Clarke to advance and Dawson to score. Moore then walked Stevie Mangrum and a Jake Matheny passed ball put both men in scoring position with no outs. Dalton Reed bounced out but Clarke came home to make it 2-0 Woodchucks.
They would not score again. In fact, they would not tally another hit. Josh Bottenfield pitched well for a while in his first start of the year, at one point retiring eight in a row before the Mallards got to him in the fourth. With one out, Doran Turchin and Angel Camacho singled, and Jeffrey Mitchell, Jr. brought everyone home with a blast to left field to put Madison ahead 3-2.
Bottenfield came back out for the fifth and the Mallards quickly got back to work. Matheny doubled and Cole Daily brought him home with a single. Daily later scored on a defensive miscue, and Turchin kept the inning going with another single to chase Bottenfield. In came Jackson Owens, and Camacho launched a homer to left field to make it 7-2. Camacho’s run was the first that Owens has surrendered this year.
Owens worked around a pair of errors to toss a scoreless sixth, but the Mallards got back to work in the seventh against Andreas Papageorge when Turchin hit a two-run homer of his own to make it 9-2. Erik Gutierrez threw a scoreless eighth, but the Mallards pitching staff was sensational, combining for just three baserunners against, all on walks, after the first inning, with no hits and no runs allowed.
These two teams will square off again Monday, this time in Wausau. Payton Coffman will make his first start of the year for Wisconsin, with first pitch at Athletic Park scheduled for 6:35 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.
The Wisconsin Woodchucks 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 170 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.woodchucks.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Woodchucks as your favorite team.