Blackburn Dominates In Big Victory
Righty Retires Final 14 Batters Faced
Wausau, Wis.- The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (12-22) continued their mastery of the Wisconsin Woodchucks (18-14) as they swept the home and series with a win on Sunday by a score of 12-6. A day after the two teams played a game just over two hours, Sunday’s contest was more traditional and featured several rallies.
The Rafters jumped all over Woodchucks starter Seth Davis (Augustana) in the 1st when RBI base hits from Clark Eagan (Arkansas) and Michael Jurgella (St. Cloud State) helped the Rafters build a 3-0 lead after one half of an inning. Wisconsin would come right back and tack on four runs in the bottom of the 1st and it seemed like Rafters’ starter Nick Blackburn (Illinois) would not last too long. However, Blackburn would recover and go on to dominate the Woodchucks the rest of the way.
After throwing 29 pitches in the bottom of the 1st, Blackburn at one point would retire fourteen consecutive Woodchucks as he threw seven strong innings. His counterpart, Davis, would last only 2.1 innings and give up 6 earned runs. The Rafters would put some distance between themselves and the Woodchucks with three runs in the third and two more in the fourth on an Eagan two RBI double.
Wisconsin took advantage of Blackburn’s exit and put together a rally in the bottom of the 8th to make a three run game. The Rafters would come back with three in the top of the 9th and put down any question of a comeback.
Wiscsonsin Rapids finishes up the first half tomorrow with a split day, night doubleheader versus the Eau Claire Express. Game two at home is Bacon Appreciation Night at historic Witter Field. Game 1 starts at noon at Carson Park in Eau Claire and Game 2 is at 7:05 pm.
The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 21st season of summer collegiate baseball, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 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 115 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (DET) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (STL) and Ben Zobrist (TB). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League YouTube channel. For more information, visit www.raftersbaseball.com.