La Crosse, WI – July 18, 2010 (PRESS RELEASE). Trailing 2-1 into their half of the ninth, the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters scored a single run to force extras, and then fell victim to a La Crosse Logger walk-off hit for a 3-2 final Sunday.
A lead single in the tenth started the Loggers on their way to walk-off heroics. Rafter's reliever Steve Godawa then walked a batter and induced a fielder's choice to put runners at first and second. After an intentional walk to load the bases, Ryan Palermo snared a one-hop smash at third and threw home for out number two. But the next batter, Mick Doyle, laced a single to left to bring home the winning run.
The Rafters got on the board first with a two out RBI single from Craig Shul in the top of the second. Starter Dan Johnson held the lead through five scoreless innings. The righty allowed just three hits, no walks and struck out four in what became his longest outing of the year. In the bottom of the sixth, Johnson allowed a single and a sacrifice bunt before leaving the game with a runner on third. Reliever Tommy Organ allowed a game tying double to the first batter he faced, then, after a strike out, surrendered the lead on a two out RBI knock.
With his club trailing by one, reliever Brad Douthit delivered three scoreless innings, starting when he retired the final batter of the sixth. Douthit allowed just a hit, a walk and struck out two before giving way to Godawa for the final out in the ninth.
As Douthit held the deficit, the Rafters mounted their Rally in the ninth. Cody Koback and Craig Shul both worked walks around a Derek Brown bunt single to load the bases with no one out. Brad Hallberg grounded a ball deep enough at short to score the tying run with the first out of the inning. But when Matt Johnson didn't make contact on a squeeze attempt, the Loggers caught Brown off of third for out number two. Johnson struck out one pitch later to end the threat.
The Rafters are now 7-12 in the 19 games this season decided by one or two runs. The loss moves the team's second half record to 3-6 headed into the All-Star Break.
After the three day break for the Northwoods League All-Star festivities, the Rafters return home for one against the Wisconsin Woodchucks on Thursday July, 22. Actor James Best, who starred as Rosco P. Coltrane on the hit TV series "The Dukes of Hazzard" will be on hand.
The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters are members of the 16-team summer collegiate Northwoods League. Single game tickets, ticket packages and group tickets are on sale now! For more information call (715) 424-5400 or visit www.raftersbaseball.com.
Courtesy: WI Rapids Rafters