Rafters Pick up Decisive Victory Over Mallards

Rafters cut magic number down to two with home win

Playing in front of a packed house at Historic Witter Field, the first-place Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (21-12) got one step closer to locking up a playoff spot with a 5-2 win over the Madison Mallards (16-17) Thursday night.

Trailing 1-0 in the second, Noah Thigpen hit a sacrifice fly to score Osvaldo Tovalin and tie the game. Matt Oldham hit a two-run homer later in the inning to put the Rafters on top 3-1. In the third inning, Jake Dunham hit a two-out solo shot to extend the Rafters lead.

Tovalin hit an RBI single that scored Richie Schiekofer and gave the Rafters a 5-2 cushion heading to the ninth. Brayden Bonner pitched a clean ninth inning to close out the win and earn the save. Starter Neil Abbatiello gets the win with 10 strikeouts in six innings of work.

Wisconsin Rapids now has a magic number of two, holding a 1.5-game lead over the Fond du Lac Dock Spiders. With the win, the Rafters have clinched the best overall record in the division and home-field advantage should they reach the postseason.

The Rafters and Mallards close the series Friday at Historic Witter Field for Founding Partners Fan Appreciation Night, featuring a postgame fireworks show.

As the Rafters gear up for a late-season run, you can experience the postseason action firsthand. For more information on playoff ticket offerings visit, call the Rafthouse at 715-424-5400, or visit historic Witter Field. The Rafters ticket office is open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday at Witter Field, 521 Lincoln Street in Wisconsin Rapids.


The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 22 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, over 200 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (TOR).  All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Rafters as your favorite team.