Western Division Champions!
The Clinton LumberKings are going back to the Midwest League Championship Series, punching their ticket with a 6-2 win over the Cedar Rapids Kernels on Monday night at Perfect Game Field. The LumberKings win marks their third trip to the Championship Series over the last ten seasons.
Scoring started early for Clinton who led throughout. Kernels starting pitcher Tyler Palm failed to make it though the first and was hung with the loss for his time out. The LumberKings sent eight men to the plate in the inning scoring three runs with RBI singles from Will Banfield, Evan Edwards, and J.D. Osborne.
Palm (0-1) was hung with the loss for his time out. Over his brief 0.2 innings of work he allowed three runs on three hits while walking one and striking out one.
Cedar Rapids trimmed the lead to two with a run in the bottom of the third. Jared Akins doubled to open the inning and scored two batters later on a Gabe Snyder RBI fielder's choice.
The LumberKings added a run in the fifth, before the Kernels answered with their final run of the night in the bottom of the inning. Wander Javier doubled - his second of the game - and scored on a Tyler Webb RBI single.
In the top of the seventh, Clinton put the game away for good with a two-run rally. Kameron Misner and Evan Edwards each reached and were driven home by a Bubba Hollins triple off the wall in left - his first triple of the season.
Strong pitching over the final two innings sealed the win for Clinton with Peyton Culbertson (1-0) earning the win. Over his 2.1 innings of relief work he allowed no runs on one hit while walking none and striking out one.
Manuel Rodriguez recorded the final two outs with Matt Wallner flying out to Peyton Burdick in left to send the LumberKings back to the Midwest League Championship Series for the eighth time in franchise history.
The LumberKings will take tomorrow off before meeting the South Bend Cubs in Game One of the Midwest League Championship Series on Wednesday night at Four Winds Field.
Midwest League Championship Series tickets for game three in Clinton are on sale NOW. Ticket prices for playoff games remain the same as the regular season. $8 for adult general admission, $7 for student/senior/military general admission, and $9 for box seats. Fans who purchase tickets in advance of game day receive a $1 discount.
** BUY YOUR TICKETS **