WISCONSIN SPORTS ROUND-UP: Brewers select first college player in third round of draft
MILWAUKEE - The Milwaukee Brewers selected their first college player this afternoon, in Round-Three of the Major League Draft. The Brewers took right-hander Cy Sneed from Dallas Baptist University with the 85th pick.
The Texas Rangers had drafted him in 2011, but he opted to go to college instead. Sneed went 8-3 in his junior year with Dallas Baptist, with an ERA of 3.55. In Round Four, Milwaukee took center-fielder Troy Stokes from Calvert Hall College High School in Maryland. Ten rounds of the draft are due to be completed today, with 30 more tomorrow.
The Brewers' first-round draft choice from 2012 has been named a starter in the Midwest League All-Star Game. Catcher Clint Coulter of the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers has been named as Western Division starter against the East on June 17th at West Michigan. The 20-year-old Coulter will be the designated hitter for the West. He leads the Class-"A" Midwest League with 11 homers. Coulter is batting .291 with a .985 on-base plus slugging percentage with 11 homers and 43 RBI's in 53 games. Timber Rattlers' third baseman Taylor Brennan has also been named as a starter for the West, along with Beloit outfielder Boog Powell -- who leads the league with a .340 battling average. Beloit infielder Luis Baez was chosen as a reserve for the West squad. Three Wisconsin players have been named as All-Star pitchers -- right-handers Preston Gainey, Barrett Astin, and Taylor Williams. Two Beloit pitchers were also chosen -- right-handers Andres Avila and Kyle Finnegan.
The Brewers lead the National League Central by five games, partially because they're 8-2 against division rival Pittsburgh this season. The Brewers open a three-game series tonight against the Pirates, in their second visit to PNC Park this year. The Crew went 3-1 in their first trip to the Steel City, April 17-20. The Brewers have six of their last nine overall, after splitting a four-game home-and-home set against Minnesota this week. Pittsburgh had won five-of-six before losing to San Diego on Wednesday to cap off a ten-game road trip. The Pirates have won 8-of-11 at home. Right-hander Kyle Lohse is going for his eighth straight victory for the Crew tonight, against Pittsburgh right-hander Brandon Cumpton. Lohse is 7-1 with a 2.60 ERA. He has not lost since April first, and he's coming off his best outing of the season last Sunday. He tossed a three-hit shutout against the Chicago Cubs in his first complete game of the season. Lohse has been the Pirates twice during his current streak, striking out 14 Pittsburgh hitters in 15 innings with an ERA of 1.20. He has won six straight decisions against the Bucs, dating back to 2011 when he was with Saint Louis. Lohse is 11-2 lifetime against the Pirates, who will start right-hander Brandon Cumpton tonight. He's 0-2 with a 6.58 ERA. Cumpton was tagged for eleven runs in just three-and-two-thirds innings at Los Angeles last Saturday.
The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers and Beloit Snappers are both going for three straight wins tonight in their current Midwest League series. The Timber Rattlers are hosting Cedar Rapids near Appleton, after a 7-4 Rattlers' victory last night. The Snappers host Peoria again, on the heels of a 9-8 slugfest win. Wisconsin enters the weekend in sixth place among the eight teams in the Western Division. The Timber Rattlers are 28-31 for the first half, 11-and-a-half games behind first-place Kane County. Beloit remains last in the West at 26-33, 13-and-a-half off the pace.
In the Northwoods League, the Lakeshore Chinooks and the Eau Claire Express will try to start new winning streaks tonight. The Chinooks ended a seven-game streak with a 4-1 loss to the Wisconsin Woodchucks last night. Eau Claire snapped a five-game string with a 6-2 loss to Thunder Bay. Tonight, Lakeshore begins a new home series against Wisconsin Rapids, which is coming off a 5-nothing loss to the La Crosse Loggers. The Loggers host Kenosha, which lost to Madison 13-4 last night. Madison is at home against Green Bay, which is coming off a 16-1 rout of Kalamazoo. The Woodchucks are at home in Wausau against Battle Creek, and Eau Claire opens a road series at Mankato. Going into the weekend, each division has three leaders, all at 7-3. Madison, Lakeshore, and Green Bay are atop the South Division. Eau Claire, Rochester, and Willmar are the leaders in the North.
Jerry Kelly of Madison will stick around for the weekend at the PGA's Fed-Ex Saint Jude Classic in Memphis. Kelly shot a three-under-par 67 in his second round today. He's a two-under-138 at the halfway point of the tournament, in a tie for 26th as of early this afternoon. Pewaukee native Mark Wilson will get some extra time to rest before he plays in next week's U-S Open. He missed the cut at TPC Southwind, tied for 123rd as of early afternoon. Wilson shot a three-over-par 73 today, and was plus-four after two rounds. Play was suspended as of early afternoon due to more rain. Ben Crane still had the lead at minus-12.
Matt Kenseth of Cambridge will try to keep his lead in the NASCAR Sprint Cup standings at the Pocono-400 in Pennsylvania on Sunday. Qualifying takes place tonight. Kenseth took over first place in the season point standings last weekend. He has 463 points, two more than second-place Jeff Gordon. In 28 career starts at Pocono, Kenseth has ten Top-Ten finishes, and three Top-Five showings. Travis Kvapil of Janesville is back, after a few weeks away. He'll try to qualify along with Paul Menard of Eau Claire and Beloit-born Danica Patrick. Meanwhile, the Camping World Truck Series is in Fort Worth, Texas for the Winstar World Casino-400 tonight. Johnny Sauter of Necedah won the second of his two practice runs, at 177-point-247 miles an hour. Sauter is third in the season truck standings. The Nationwide Series is off this weekend.
The boys' state high school individual tennis tournament continues today at UW-Madison's Nielsen Tennis Center. Only one of the top-seeded players competed yesterday. Felix Corwin of Brookfield East had a first-round bye in the Division 1 singles before eliminating Daniel Moore of Kenosha Tremper 6-0, 6-0. Corwin improved to 19-and-0. Competition will continue through the quarter-finals today in both singles and doubles in two divisions. Consolation and championship semi-finals are set for tomorrow, along with title matches at the UW's Nielsen Tennis Stadium.
The Green Bay Packers will hold their annual Family Night on Saturday August second. Entertainment begins at 5:30 that evening at Lambeau Field. As always, it will feature football, prizes, and a fireworks show. However, the Packers say the format will be different because there will be a full practice instead of a scrimmage. The practice will still include the offense against the defense with live contact. Ten-dollar tickets will go on sale June 23rd through Ticketmaster and at the Packers' ticket office. Parking proceeds will be given to the Wendy's Wonderful Kids Program. As always, WLUK-TV of Green Bay will produce a statewide broadcast of Family Night.
A coach who led a junior college hockey team to two national championships has been named as the new men's coach at Northland College. The Ashland school competes in the NCAA's Division III, and Seamus Gregory says his goal is always to coach at the highest level he can. Williston State College in North Dakota hired Gregory to start its hockey program in 2011. Terry Olson, who heads the Williston foundation, says he's disappointed but not surprised that Gregory is moving to northern Wisconsin. Olson said the coach did an "incredible" job in building Williston State's program, not to mention its two national titles. Gregory will replace Steve Fabiilli, who left in April to become the new women's hockey coach at Concordia-Wisconsin in Mequon. Northland co-athletic director Steve Wammer said Gregory is a proven winner and recruiter, and he'll inspire confidence about the future of Northland's hockey program.