Rafters Earn Seventh Season Victory Over Mallards to Finish Home Stand

Wisconsin Rapids had four singles in the bottom of the first inning

WISCONSIN RAPIDS, WI – The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (22-21) knocked in three runs in the first inning and held on for a 4-3 victory over the Madison Mallards (20-20), winning the second of three games played at historic Witter Field.

The Rafters got two singles to begin the first from Sterling Hayes (Creighton) and McKinley Erves (LaGrange). Marco Castillo (Claremont McKenna) drove in Hayes with a single up the middle, and Jacob Hinderleider (Davidson) drove home Erves and Castillo with a base hit down the first baseline.

Wisconsin Rapids matched their run total from yesterday in the first inning today.

“We need to continue to stick with our approach,” said Hayes. “Mine is trying to get a pitch to hit early in the count.”

Madison responded in the second with an RBI single and in the fourth tacked on another with a walk, stolen base, and then dash home by Zach Strobakken, who took advantage of a mishandled throw at third.

Rafters’ starter Nathan Hemmerling (Lakeland) completed the fourth inning with his third strikeout, he allowed only one earned run off four hits.

Cole Eigenhuis (Sacramento City) began the fifth and stranded four Mallards on base through 3.1 innings, gaining his second win of the year.

Zach Bennett (Central Florida) captured the final five outs, his second save, even after allowing runners on the corners with no outs in the ninth.

The Rafters play the second of a home and home tomorrow July 13th at Warner Park. First pitch is at 6:35 PM. Probable pitchers are Jack Gonzales (Dixie State, 5.82 ERA) and Eliot Turnquist (UW-Milwaukee, 7.71 ERA).  Catch the coverage 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