ROCHESTER, Minn. -- After failing to come through in the clutch time and time again, the Honkers (7-23), atleast for one night, came through in the clutch as Drew Ellis lined a 3-2 pitch over the left field wall with two outs and two men on to give the Honkers 6-3 lead and defeat the Eau Claire Express (20-11).
The Honkers, for a second game in a row, got out to an early lead, scoring three in the bottom of the first. Alex Fitchett lead off with a single and after a double play that allowed him to advance to third, Fitchett score on Joey Czarske's RBI single up the middle and Casey Worden followed Czarske with a two-run home run to left, his fourth, to make the score 3-0.
In the fifth, Houston Glad was removed after allowwing one runner on with one out, despite throwing three shutout innings allowing only one run in the fourth.
Glad gave way to Sam Bjorngjeld (W, 2-1 who gave up a two-run home run to Eau Claire first baseman Rudy Rott, his first of the year to tie up the ballgame at 3. Express starter Austin Schulfer, shut down the Honkers over his final five innings in the game, giving up only one hit and five total baserunners, three by HBP.
Schulfer was relieved by Johnathon Tripp (L, 0-1) for the seventh and he was unable to keep the game tied.
After retiring Jacob Thomas, Tripp allowed a single to left to Kyle Kasser. Keaton Weisz then struck out as the second out of the inning. Alex Fitchett lined a single up the middle to give the Honkers runners on first and second with two outs. Drew Ellis came up and after battling through six pitches to bring it to a full count, Ellis took the seventh offering from Tripp over the left field wall for his second of the season giving the Honkers the 6-3 lead.
THe Honkers are back on the road tomorrow as they play the second consecutive game versus Eau Claire with a start time of 7:05 at Carson Park.