Rafters and Chinooks Meet for Series Finale on Sunday
Wisconsin Rapids seeks fourth win against Lakeshore this season
Wisconsin Rapids, Wis. – Looking to avoid a sweep, Wisconsin Rapids (41-18, 14-9) hosts Lakeshore (31-27, 13-10) on Sunday at Witter Field for the series finale. The Rafters comeback bid fell short on Saturday to the Chinooks in an 8-7 loss.
The visiting Chinooks did not take long to get on the board in their first trip to Witter Field this season, scoring in the top of the first inning. Jacob Richardson knocked in the run with a two-out double off the wall in right-center, plating Matthew Mika who led off the game with a single.
Ryan Stekl for the Rafters doubled to right field to score Nick Anderson to tie the game in the first. Stekl came in to score on a Jake Guenther RBI single to give the Rafters their first lead.
Lakeshore regained the lead with a six-run second inning. The Chinooks loaded the bases and Matthew Mika singled between shortstop and third base to score two runs. Following a hit by pitch, Jacob Richardson unloaded the bases with a triple to the gap in right. Richardson scored on a Nick Gatewood double for the sixth run in the frame. The teams traded runs in the third inning, as the Chinooks led 8-3 after three. Mika knocked in his third RBI of the evening with a double to plate DalPorto for Lakeshore, while Bryson Stott singled and scored for the Rafters on a Dustin Woodcock RBI single.
The Rafters cut the deficit in the seventh inning, scoring two runs to pull within three of Lakeshore. A throwing error scored the first run of the frame and newcomer Christian Kuzemka delivered a sacrifice groundout in his first plate appearance in Wisconsin Rapids to score Woodcock. Wisconsin Rapids rallied in the ninth inning and scored two runs to close the gap and looked to walk-off or force extra innings. Nick Anderson stepped in the box with the bases loaded and two outs, drilling a grounder down the third base line, but a stellar play from Richardson clinched the win for the Chinooks.
Set to start on the mound in his second Rafters start in George Castillo (0-1). In his lone start this year, the right-hander gave up four runs in four innings on the road in Rockford. This past spring at Hope International, the junior was the ace of the staff. Castillo won a team-high eight games and tossed a team-best 93 innings, striking out 91 batters.
Leading the Rafters offensively is Bryson Stott, who owns a team-high .348 batting average. The freshman recently broke the record for most runs scored in Rafters history, accumulating 60 runs scored. Donnie Dewees, who scored 54 runs in 2013, held the previous record. Stott is six hits and seven stolen bases away from breaking two more records, respectively.
– The Rafters are 3-2 against the Chinooks this season. Rapids won the first three games of the series before Lakeshore has posted victories in the last two.
– Bryson Stott owns a 15-game hitting streak after recording a single in Saturday's game. The infielder has seven multi-hit games in that span, three of which he has notched three hits.
– Dustin Woodcock is two RBI's away from 100 in his Rafters career, which would mark the first player in team history to hit the century mark.
Sunday’s first pitch is set for 4:05 p.m. at Witter Field. LubDub Sports presents Wrestling night with special guest Jerry “The King” Lawler. Coverage of the game starts at 3:50 p.m. on AM 1320 WFHR and WFHR.com, the Rafters Radio Network.
The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters 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, 180 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.raftersbaseball.comor download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Rafters as your favorite team.