The Wisconsin Woodchucks got fresh legs after their first off day of the season came Sunday after their road trip to Battle Creek. The ‘Chucks looked to once again improve on their record at home Monday night against the Madison Mallards, and earn that top three spot in the South Division a near 2.5 games away. The Woodchucks fought through a 4-1 deficit and over came with composure as they rolled past the Madison Mallards 9-5.
The ‘Chucks took the lead coming in their first at bat with a fielders choice by Brendon Hayden that scored center fielder Brooks Braga to give the Woodchucks the early 1-0 lead.
The Mallards struck back in a big way with a three run bomb to left field by Michael McGraw to suddenly stun the Woodchucks ace, Jack Fischer with the 3-1 lead early in the second inning.
In the same inning, right fielder Tyler Marincov pounced on a fastball that left the park to add to the three run inning, pinning a 4-1 lead on the board, and forced the Woodchucks to fight back for the lead early in the game.
The ‘Chucks seemingly had a lot of fight left as Chevas Numata stepped up to the plate and belted a double to left field scoring second basemen Madison Carter to cut the lead in half 4-2, in the bottom of the second inning.
In the third inning, catcher Skyler Ewing sent a sacrifice fly to center field, deep enough to score Brad Mckewon. The ‘Chucks grew one step closer to the previous 4-1 lead by the Mallards, now only down by one.
The Woodchucks were not only eager to grab the one run to tie, but also eager to put points on the board, and it showed. The ‘Chucks succeeded with at least one steal in every inning through the fourth inning. The Woodchucks also set a record with five steals in one inning Monday night.
The effort from the ‘Chucks came through in the fifth inning when Brendon Hayden slapped one to deep right- center field for a two RBI double to take the 5-4 lead scoring Brooks Braga, and J.D. Davis.
The Woodchucks were not done though. Madison Carter singled up the middle scoring Brendon Hayden after his two RBI double to make it a 6-4 game after a Mallards pitching change. The Woodchucks would come away with three runs in the fifth inning to reestablish their lead once again.
The lead diminished after Derek Fischer scored from an infield single by John Welborn to bring the lead to within one once again in the sixth inning.
The Woodchucks struck a golden opportunity to gain some insurance runs coming in the bottom of the sixth inning with bases loaded and no one out.
Brad McKewon stepped in with a base knock with nobody gone to score two more Woodchucks making it an 8-5 game. The Woodchucks were in disagreement when a passed ball got beyond the Mallards catcher and bounced back in time to tag out Brooks Braga at home for the controversial call by the home plate umpire. The ‘Chucks would strand one in the sixth inning.
The Woodchucks kept rolling and grabbed another run with Brooks Braga at the plate. Braga blasted an absolute shot to left field for his first home run of the year to increase the ‘Chucks lead to four going into the ninth inning.
Jackson Lowery dialed his way through the Mallards, striking out three and giving up zero runs through two innings. He shut down and struck out the last batter of the game and helped the ‘Chucks proceed to victory with a 9-5 win.
The Wisconsin Woodchucks would improve to 13-13 on the season and will go on the road again against the Mallards for the last two games of the three game series Tuesday and Wednesday night, then return home for a three game series against the Eau Claire Express.