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Cavs and Giants Split Saturday DH

July 19, 2009

Soya Aoki's fly ball to right field scored new acquisition Tanner Vavra with the game-winning run as the Cavaliers beat the Oshkosh Giants, 6-5, in game one of a Wisconsin State League doubleheader Satu

Wisconsin State League

The Oshkosh Giants just kept fighting, but the Eau Claire Cavaliers wouldn’t be denied.

Soya Aoki’s fly ball to right field scored new acquisition Tanner Vavra with the game-winning run as the Cavaliers beat the Oshkosh Giants, 6-5, in game one of a Wisconsin State League doubleheader Saturday night at Carson Park.

Oshkosh beat Eau Claire, 5-4, in 12 innings in the nightcap. No other details were available at press time.

Lance Poppy started the rally in the seventh with a leadoff walk after being down in the count 0-2. Andy Abromaitis sacrificed Poppy to second, and Vavra – a Menomonie graduate – pinch ran for Poppy.

Ben Sebesta walked and Ben Otto was hit by a pitch to load the bases, setting the stage for Aoki.

Speed was the name of the game for Eau Claire (31-15, 12-9) as the Cavs scored two runs resulting from close plays at first base ruled in favor of the hometown team.

Up 3-0 in the second inning, Otto hit a high-bouncing grounder back to pitcher Kyle Kannenberg and Otto beat the off-balance throw by a step.

The very next play, Aoki laid down a bunt and beat Kannenberg’s throw by just a step.

Both runners would score when Eau Claire North graduate Ryan Iverson displayed a tremendous piece of hitting, keeping his hands inside on a tight fastball and pulling it down the left field line just shy of the chalk for a two-run single.

But Oshkosh (11-10, 11-9) had an answer.

Blake Berger singled, and after reaching second on a wild pitch, Drew Eichstaedt singled to left field and Berger slid just under the tag by Cavs’ catcher Chase Graskewicz.

In the same inning with the bases loaded, Lucas Wirth hit a deep fly ball to right field that was caught by Aoki on the warning track, but was deep enough for Travis Derocha to score from third base.

In the seventh, Travis Helland placed a perfect bunt down the third-base line, and then stole second base on the first pitch to Derek Hiroskey. Hiroskey laid down the sacrifice and the tying run was in scoring position for Oshkosh.

But Brady Sand came in relief and closed out the seventh inning, eventually earning the win.

The Cavaliers responded – much like they always do in these situations.

Eau Claire Memorial graduate and former Eau Claire Express player Mickey Fadness played third base for the Giants. Fadness was 1-for-3.

The Wisconsin State League is one of the premier semi-professional/amateur baseball leagues in the mid-west. In operation since 1970, the Wisconsin State League is a highly competitive league that features many of the midwest's top current and former collegiate athletes, as well as many former professional baseball players. Keep up to date on everything happening in the Wisconsin State League by following the league online on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

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