Woodchucks Rally Past Rafters in Extras on Opening Night


WISCONSIN RAPIDS, WI – In a six-hour game that clocked in as the third longest in league history, the Woodchucks overcame two weather delays and a late two-run deficit to defeat the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters, 4-3.

Trailing 2-0 in the top of the seventh, Woodchucks second baseman Noah Fitzgerald led off with a double and came around to score on an RBI groundout by designated hitter Tommy Delgado. The Woodchucks nearly tied the score on center fielder Tyler Kehoe’s two-out single later that inning, but catcher Dalton Reeves was thrown out at the plate.

The tying run would have to wait until the next inning, when shortstop Clayton Mehlbauer’s RBI single brought home left fielder Kevin Kilpatrick.

In the top of the tenth with the score tied at two, Kehoe’s bunt single set the stage for right fielder Roman Kuntz to deliver the go-ahead RBI single. Kuntz came around to score on first baseman Tyler MacGregor’s RBI single off of Columbia University teammate Billy Black, who took the loss for the Rafters tonight.

Ian Asken earned the save in the bottom of the tenth, working around three walks to strand the bases loaded and preserve a 4-3 Woodchucks victory – their first at Witter Field since July 2019.

Top Performers

Ryan Lobus drew the Opening Day start and struck out seven in three innings of work. If not for two rain delays which lasted a combined three hours, he would have stayed in the game for longer. Dante Chirico worked three innings in middle relief, allowing two runs and striking out three.

Geo Camfield picked up the win after three scoreless innings of late-game relief. He struck out five, working around a hit and two walks.

Clayton Mehlbauer enjoyed a productive night at the plate, finishing 3-for-5 with a RBI.

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David Keech
Author: David Keech

David Keech is a math teacher in Wisconsin Rapids and public address announcer for Abbotsord High School. He officiates basketball, baseball, and softball in central Wisconsin. He has reported on amateur sports since 2011, known as 'KeechDaVoice.' David can be reached at [email protected]