Rafters Win Fourth Straight, Sweep Growlers

Josh Nicoloff had a Grand Slam and Seven RBI


KALAMAZOO, MI – The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (10-8) walked 16 times in an 11-7 victory over the Kalamazoo Growlers (5-12) completing the series sweep.

The Growlers got on the board in the first, off an RBI single. Although the Rafters walked three times in the first two innings, it was in the third where their runs began.

Four walks, one hit by pitch, and a hit scored six runs. The hit, a Josh Nicoloff (Kansas State) three-run double to left-center.

The Growlers responded in the fourth, with two hits and two runs. That was all that Rafters starter Justin Beyer (Wagner) allowed, as he retired Kalamazoo 1-2-3 in his fifth and final inning.

Wisconsin Rapids added one in the sixth, making it 7-3, entering the bottom of the sixth.

After a Rafters error, The Growlers strung along four straight hits to score three runs off Donovan Brandl (Wisconsin-Whitewater). In the bottom of the seventh, the score was knotted up at seven, after an RBI single.

The top of the eighth saw three walks to load the bases, for Nicoloff once more. Nicoloff launched a ball over the left-field fence. The Grand Slam gave Nicoloff seven RBIs and the Rafters a four-run advantage.

Devin Rivera (Villanova), after allowing the equalizer in the seventh, pitched two scoreless innings to earn the win.

The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters will head to Traverse City, Michigan, to play the first of two against the Pit Spitters. The first pitch is at 7:05 p.m. The game can be heard on WFHR AM 1320.



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 proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Having completed its’ 27th season, 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 250 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time All-Star and 2016 Roberto Clemente Award winner Curtis Granderson, three-time Cy Young Award winner and World Series Champion Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS). As well as 2019 Rookie of the Year and Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and MLB Gold Glove finalist and 2019 Second Team All-MLB shortstop Marcus Semien (TOR). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. 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