Rox Fall To Traverse City In Northwoods League Championship Game
The St. Cloud Rox saw their season end with a 9-3 loss to Traverse City in the Northwoods League Championship game at Joe Faber Field Friday night.
The Rox got on the board first in the bottom of the second inning when ROCORI's Jack Steil knocked in Bobby Goodloe, then held the lead when Justin Kirby launched a rocket from right field to throw out Traverse City's Christian Faust to end a Pit Spitters threat in the top of the third.
The Pit Spitters scored a pair of runs in the top of the fourth inning to take a 2-1 lead, with the first run scoring on a single and the second on a botched rundown play with runners on first and third.
After the Rox failed to score despite having runners on second and third with just one out in the bottom of the fourth inning, the Pit Spitters plated a pair of runs in the top of the fifth to make the score 4-1.
Traverse City increased its lead to 6-1 in the top of the sixth inning on a Rox error and an infield single.
St. Cloud rallied for a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh inning with runs scoring on a single and a sacrifice fly to make the score 6-3, but Traverse City's Mario Camilletti smacked a two-run home run in the top of the eighth to restore the five-run lead at 8-3.
Former ROCORI pitcher Nick Penick got the start for the Rox despite appearing in only five regular season games after joining the team midway through the season on July 17th. He lasted 3.1 innings, allowing just one run on four hits in a no-decision.
The Rox won a franchise record 50 games in the 2021 season under first year manager David Bellamy. The Pit Spitters, who joined the Northwoods League in 2019, has now won the NWL championship in each of their first two full seasons.