By Cooper Perkins
Wisconsin Rapids, Wis.-In a game that started off locked in a pitcher’s duel, a late-game rally lifted the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (21-10) over the Green Bay Bullfrogs (12-19) by a final score of 7-4.
Rafters starter Chris Cooper (Texas A&M Corpus Christi) turned in another dominant performance by breezing through seven shutout innings and allowing just seven hits. He also struck out two without a walk.
After a hollow threat in the first inning, the Rafters struck first in the second when Jake Lumley (Canisius) blasted a three-run home run off of the scoreboard in right-center field. Lumley’s smash was his second of the year, both coming against the Bullfrogs, and staked the Rafters to a 3-0 lead.
The score held steady until the eighth inning, when the Bullfrogs finally broke through following Cooper’s departure from the ballgame. Three Green Bay runs crossed the plate against reliever Cameron Busby (Georgia College) after an RBI fielder’s choice from Matt Hoeg and back-to-back singles from Laren Eustace and Randell Kanemaru.
That eighth inning tie would not last long, as the Rafters regained the lead in the last of the eighth. After reliever Logan Elliot walked a pair to open the inning and a Bullfrog error loaded the bases, Doak Dozier (Virginia) poked a two-run single into center field, past the pinched Green Bay infield. Demetrius Sims (Bethune-Cookman) followed with a run-scoring fielder’s choice to give the Rats a 6-3 lead. Sims later came around to score on a delayed steal of home to extend the lead to four runs entering the ninth.
Northwoods League saves leader Garrett Schilling (Xavier) came on to shut the door and proceeded to strike out the side in order and seal a 7-3 victory. The win closed out the most successful month in franchise history, as the Rafters move into July after posting a 21-9 mark in June.
The final game of the series is set for tomorrow at 7:05 p.m. at Witter Field, with gates opening at 6:05 p.m. In search of their third win a row, the Rafters will also look to maintain their lead atop the South Division.
For more information, please visit raftersbaseball.com