The Eau Claire Express fell victim to a late rally at Carson Park on Friday, surrendering four runs in the eighth inning for a 7-6 loss to the La Crosse Loggers.
With the game tied 3-3 entering the eighth, Harrison Freed hit a bases-clearing three-RBI double for the Loggers to break the deadlock, and he later came around to score on an error to give La Crosse a 7-3 cushion.
Eau Claire didn’t go down without a fight though. Nick Brueser led off the bottom of the eighth with a solo home run — his fifth of the season — and Cody Milligan scored on an error in the ninth to pull the Express within two runs. Troy Beilsmith’s RBI single trimmed the lead to one later in the ninth.
The Express eventually loaded the bases with one out in the final inning, but Scott Ogrin was thrown out at home on a ground ball hit by Devon Garcia, and Noah Sifrit was set down on strikes.
The Express outhit the Loggers 12-4.
The late Loggers surge spoiled a strong outing from starting pitcher Carson Rudd. The right-hander allowed three runs in seven innings of work.
Eau Claire travels to Bismarck for a two-game series this weekend.
LOGGERS 7, EXPRESS 6
La Crosse 003 000 040 — 7 4 1
Eau Claire 200 100 012 — 6 12 1
WP: Hunter Davis (2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K). LP: Trevor Olson (0 IP, 0 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB). Leading Hitters — La Crosse: Harrison Freed 1x4 (2B, 3 RBI). Eau Claire: Scott Ogrin 2x4 (2 2B, 2 RBI), Spencer Myers 2x5 (2B), Cody Milligan 2x3 (RBI), Troy Beilsmith 2x4 (RBI), Nick Brueser 2x4 (HR, RBI).
LOGGERS 6, EXPRESS 4 (13 INNINGS)
LC 120 010 000 000 2 — 6 9 1
EC 200 110 000 000 0 — 4 12 2
WP: Chase Whitaker (3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 4 K). LP: Austin George (3 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K). Leading hitters — La Crosse: Mike Rothenberg 2x7 (HR, 2 RBI), Grant Judkins 2x4 (2 2B, RBI), Donta Williams 2x5. Eau Claire: Cody Milligan 3x7 (2B, RBI), Spencer Myers 2x6 (2B), Alec Trela 2x5 (2B), Troy Beilsmith (2B).