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Woodchucks close out 2013 season with a loss at La Crosse

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WSAU-WOODCHUCKS) - The Wisconsin Woodchucks finished up the 2013 season with a 13-2 loss to the La Crosse Loggers, ending in fifth place in the Northwoods League South in the second half. With the loss, the Woodchucks finished the 2013 season 29-41 overall with a 16-20 record in the second half.

The Loggers finished 43-27 and 22-13 overall, just a half game behind the Lakeshore Chinooks for the second playoff spot in the Northwoods League South.

Mikole Pierce got the ball rolling for the Woodchucks offensively in the top of the first. Pierce hit a towering fly to dead center field that cleared the fence for a home run. It was Pierce’s third home run with the Woodchucks and fourth on the season as he had one previously with the Lakeshore Chinooks.

The Loggers would respond in the bottom of the inning with a long ball of their own. With two on and one out, Michael Katz hit one over the wall in center, his franchise record 18th home run of the season, to put the Loggers on top 3-1.

The Loggers came back with another crooked number in the second. Kevin Zak singled with the bases loaded to bring across the first run of the inning. Two batters later, Johnny Bekakis lined a base hit to center that scored Mike Nadratowski and Brandon DeFazio making it a 6-1 Loggers lead. A wild pitch by Curtis Morgan allowed the seventh run to come across, giving the Loggers a six-run lead.

Loggers starter Steve Hagen settled in after the Pierce home run. Hagen held the Woodchucks off the board until the top of the fifth where and RBI double by John Menken scored Pierce to cut the lead to five runs. After the run, the Loggers added some insurance in the fifth and sixth, both times with Brandon DeFazio providing the big hit. In the fifth, DeFazio had a two-run single to make it a 9-2 game. DeFazio came back up in the sixth with two outs, doubling to left field to bring home Eric Toole.

The Loggers would tack on three additional runs in the seventh, but they would not need them in the 13-2 victory.

As the Woodchucks go into the off season, historic Athletic Park at Wausau prepares for a major renovation project.  The first phase of the renovation includes demolition of the grandstand and bleachers, with all new seating, concesssions, and amenities going up before the Woodchucks spring 2014 season opener.

About Wisconsin Woodchucks

The Wisconsin Woodchucks are a member of the prestigious Northwoods League, a collegiate summer baseball league featuring top talent from across the country. Located in Wausau, Wis., the Woodchucks play at historic Athletic Park, and are annually among the top-ranked teams nationally in per-game attendance. More information about the Wisconsin Woodchucks is available at www.woodchucks.com, or by calling 715-845-5055.