Express Split With Mallards

The loss drops the Express to a record of 5-7 this season, while the Mallards improve to 7-5. The win by Madison snaps a three-game losing streak at Carson Park for the Mallards.

Madison scored first in the top of the fourth when with a runner at second for the Mallards, Daniel Webb hit a groundball up the middle but the ball was misplayed by the Express to allow Brandon Wikoff to score from second.

The Express’ Pat Colwell (San Diego State) tied the contest in the bottom of the fifth on a single up the middle that plated Joe Bonfe (Creighton). Eau Claire then took the lead in the bottom of the sixth after Kole Calhoun (Yavapai) doubled and then advanced to third on a wild pitch. The newest addition to the Express Devin Lohman (Long Beach State) then hit a sacrifice fly to center, deep enough to drive in Calhoun from third to make the score 2-1 Express.

The Mallards tied the game at 2-2 in the top of the seventh with a sacrifice fly of their own by Mitch Saum to plate Erik Nielson. Madison then took control in the top of the eighth. The leadoff batter walked and two batters later Neil Medchill hit a ground-rule double to center to score Wikoff from second. The next batter Daniel Webb singled through the right side to knock in Medchill to make the score 4-2 Mallards. Webb later scored in the inning on an error by the Express to give Madison a 5-2 advantage.

The Express got a run back in the bottom of the eighth. After Calhoun got his second double of the game and advanced to third on a groundout, he would score on a groundout by Lohman to make the score 5-3. However, a Daniel Webb sacrifice fly in the top of the ninth gave Mallards a 6-3 lead and that is how it would end.

Jon Ganzen (Bellevue) (1-1) received the loss allowing seven hits and striking out four. Ganzen pitched well the first six innings, but got himself into trouble his final 1.1 innings of work. Allan Donato earned the win in relief for the Mallards. Bubba O’Donnell picked up his second save of the season. Calhoun went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles and two runs scored for the Express.

Tomorrow the Express begin a home-and-home series with the La Crosse Loggers. Eau Claire and La Crosse get underway at 7:05 p.m. at Carson Park.