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Thursday, July 7th, 2011 -- 10:53 AM

On the final day of the first half of the 2011 Northwoods League season, three teams had a chance to win the South Division crown, including the Eau Claire Express. The Express needed to beat the Madison Mallards and get some help from the Wisconsin Woodchucks to win the division. Eau Claire held up their end of the bargain, defeating the Mallards, 7-5. But the Woodchucks fell to the Battle Creek Bombers 8-2, giving the Bombers the division championship, and their first playoff appearance in franchise history. The win wrapped up another solid first half for the Express (20-14), although it is the first time since 2008 they have not won the first half, South Division championship. With the first half of the season in the books, all the teams essentially start with a clean slate and are 0-0. The Express will begin their quest for the second half championship tonight when they take on the La Crosse Loggers. Eau Claire has been in the playoffs the past two seasons and will have to take home the second half if they want a chance to defend last season's title.

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