Rafters Overpower Woodchucks, In Final Away Game

Wisconsin Rapids finished 19-17 on the road in the 2021 Season

Wausau, WI – The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (38-33) put up double digits runs for the second time in three games, besting the Wisconsin Woodchucks (43-28) 10-3 in the final game away from Witter Field of the season.

In the first three innings, both teams struck out a combined nine times. Rafters’ starter Nathan Hemmerling (Lakeland) produced three.

The Woodchucks started the scoring with a solo home run, in the fourth inning. The Rafters more than just responded in the fifth, they scored six runs on four hits.

After a single and Woodchuck error, Blake Mann (St. Mary’s) worked a 10-pitch walk, that loaded the bases. Lance Gardiner (Saddleback) ripped a two-run double, followed by back-to-back RBI singles from McKinley Erves (LaGrange) and EJ Exposito (Long Island).

Erves would come around to score on a throwing error, and Exposito crossed the plate after a single up the middle from Jake Schulz (Dixie State).

Wisconsin Rapids put up more than six runs in an inning for the third time this week. On August 9th, the Rafters scored six in the seventh inning against the Woodchucks, and on August 11th facing the Green Bay Booyah, Wisconsin Rapids totaled seven runs in the first inning.

The Rafters tacked on an additional run in the sixth, with an Erves fielders’ choice that plated Mann. Erves now has 39 RBI as a Rafter and 10 in August.

Wisconsin Rapids tacked on a run in the eighth, and two in the ninth. Exposito delivered his fourth home run of the season over the left-field wall in the ninth. He leads the Rafters in longballs and has a team-best 49 RBI. Reeve Holley (Cal Baptist) had a four-hit day and generated the 13th and final Rafter hit.

Tanner Chafin (LaGrange) finished the game for the Wisconsin Rapids on the mound. After allowing a two-run homer in the sixth, the right-hander struck out three Woodchucks, and only two more base runners reached. Chafin earned the save, in his fourth appearance in the last five games.

Wisconsin Rapids’ final game of the 2021 season is tomorrow Saturday, August 14th, at Witter Field. First pitch is at 6:35 p.m., with fireworks after the final out. Coverage is on WFHR AM 1320 and the Northwoods League Baseball Network.


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