Big fifth inning buries Woodchucks in loss to Mallards
Saturday night’s contest between Madison and Wisconsin was a good one, lasting nearly four hours before the Mallards won a one-run game in the 12th inning. Sunday afternoon’s affair wasn’t quite as close. The first nine Madison hitters in the fifth inning reached, and eight of them scored to give the Mallards (28-22; 9-6) a big lead that was far too much for the Woodchucks (20-31; 5-11) to overcome in a 13-2 Madison rout at Warner Park.
The Woodchucks actually got off on a great foot Sunday, led by the fleet feet of James Davison, who opened the game up with a triple to left. Tristan Clarke singled him home on the first pitch he saw, and the Chucks had a 1-0 lead. They would never lead again. Madison responded perfectly in the bottom half with a leadoff walk by Cole Daily and a two-run home run by Zac Taylor.
Wisconsin tied the game in the third and, unsurprisingly, Davison was behind it. With two outs he singled, stole second and got to third on a throwing error by catcher Maverick Handley. The Mallard backstop then gifted the Chucks a run when he dropped a pitch, allowing Davison to scamper home to level the score at two.
But again, Madison responded perfectly, scoring twice in the third on a pair of sac flies and once more in the fourth on a Handley RBI single. But the fifth is where the damage was really done. Chucks starter Korey Rasure was excellent through eight his last time out, but he faced five hitters in the fifth and got none of them out. Taylor led off with a double and scored on a Jeffery Mitchell, Jr. single. The next man walked and then Sam Armstrong blew the game open with a monstrous three-run home run into the right-field deck. David Vinsky then doubled to end Rasure’s day. Brogan Briggs came in to make his debut, but things didn’t go too smoothly. He walked his first two men and allowed a single by Matt Elsenpeter, and all three runners scored, capping off an eight-run, six-hit Madison frame with the home team up 13-2.
Drew Spaeth and Jake Gross combined for three scoreless innings out of the Wisconsin bullpen, but the Chucks’ offense could only muster one hit, a single by Chad Fleischman, in the final four innings against the Madison bullpen, leading to a runaway 13-2 Mallards win.
The Chucks will be back in action Monday night to take on the Kenosha Kingfish for the third time this week. Degan Harte will make his first start of the summer for the Chucks, with first pitch slated for 7:05 PM.
Tickets are on sale to all Wisconsin Woodchucks home games and the 2017 Northwoods League Home Run Derby and All-Star Game, presented by Ascension. Tickets can be purchased online, by calling715.845.5055 or by stopping by the Woodchucks front office during normal business hours.