For the City Times
Isaiah Carranza strikes out nine to help move Rafters to 23-5
WISCONSIN RAPIDS – The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (23-5) defeated the Fond du Lac Dock Spiders (11-18) 7-1 behind a strong performance from the pitching staff and timely hitting on Tuesday night From Witter Field.
Isaiah Carranza led the way for the Rafters, striking out a season-high nine on the mound for the Rafters. Bryson Stott’s three RBIs and a two-run home run from Ryan Stekl highlighted the offense for Wisconsin Rapids.
After lining out hard in his first at-bat, Stekl blasted a two-run home run to open the scoring in the third inning. The first home run of the year for Stekl plated Nick Owens and gave Wisconsin Rapids a 2-0 lead.
The visiting Dock Spiders got on the board in the sixth, when Thomas Luevano knocked in Luke Mangieri from second base to cut the Rapids lead to 2-1.
The Rafters added three more runs in the seventh to extend the lead to 5-1. Stott knocked in a run on a sacrifice hit with the bases loaded and another would cross on the same play following an error by the shortstop. Nick Anderson scored a run on a wild pitch and the Rafters brought nine to the plate in the frame, but stranded the bases loaded to end the threat.
Stott added two insurance runs in the eighth with a two-RBI single to score Owens and Charlie McConnell, both of whom singled in the inning. Aaron Herr entered to pitch the ninth and struck out the side to secure the 7-1 victory.
Carranza (2-0) earned the win and silenced the strong offense of the Dock Spiders, tossing six innings of one-run baseball and striking out nine. Dock Spider starting pitcher Connor Johnson (2-1) continued his ability to put down Rafter hitters in his third appearance against Wisconsin Rapids, with the Stekl home run the lone blemish on the evening.
The teams will meet for a rematch tomorrow night in Fond du Lac, a 6:35 p.m. first pitch at Herr-Baker Field. The Rafters return homeon Thursday to host the Madison Mallards for two seven inning games, with the first slated for 5:05 p.m. Thursday marks Military Appreciation Night at Witter Field presented by Fey Printing, with the Rafters wearing patriotic jerseys to be auctioned off to benefit the Never Forgotten Honor Flight.