CLINTON, Iowa (KWQC) –The Clinton LumberKings play their second play-off game Thursday night, bringing die-heart fans to the stadium for the last home game.
This is the first time the team has come close to winning a title in 25 years, drawing more fans to the stadium.
The LumberKings have really turned it around with a winning season for the first time in years.
Pitching coach, Pete Woodworth, said the supportive fans really help motivate the players.
“I feel like every night there is more and more people and more energy just a better environment,” said Woodworth.
He said the fans are part of the reason the team is having such a strong season.
“The crowd does play into it and I think it plays into it even more for the visiting club, who kind of, you know, come in and when we get the crowd going it kind of takes the wind out of their sails,” said Woodworth.
He attributes the teams success to the restructuring of the Mariner’s minor league system. Many of the Mariner’s minor league teams have made it to the play-offs just like the LumberKings.
Greg Mroz, Director of Broadcasting and Media Relations for the LumberKings, said watching games this year is much different then previous seasons.
“It simply had been a complete turn around and I think this community has really grasped onto this team in ways that I never thought possible after last yea,” said Mroz.
He said the crowds this season are also different, louder and much more supportive. Mroz said fans are pumped about the team’s winning season.
“People who are Clinton natives, and who saw the magic of that 1991 team, they are feeling a very similar type of fervor among the team and among the community and want to make sure that they can own a piece of that,” said Mroz.
If the team wins Thursday night’s game they will move on to a third game of the play-offs which brings them one step closer to winning the Midwest-Division Title.