BY DEAN HOCKNEY
KOKOMO, Ind. – The Kokomo Jackrabbits hit a dry spell and have lost the lead in the Great Lakes East Division during the clubs inaugural Northwoods League campaign. After leading the division for nearly two weeks, the Jackrabbits are in a tail-spin, having lost a team record-tying six consecutive games through June 30. The six losses match a losing streak during nearly the same time period in 2015.
After losing the first four games of the week, Kokomo looked to right the ship with a pair of home contests against Kalamazoo last weekend. But the Rabbits could not get the tide to turn as Kalamazoo cranked out a combined 22 runs and 31 hits in the two games, winning 12-2 and 10-5. It marked the third straight game Kokomo’s opponents had reached double-digits in scoring.
Despite lowering ticket prices, Jackrabbits attendance is still down 34-percent through the first 18 games compared to the same timeframe in 2018. But that is an improvement from when the front office announced the ticket price drop – at that time, attendance was down 46.3-percent. While Game 13 was the 15th largest home crowd in team history (2,184), Game 14 was the eighth smallest (635) and Game 18 was the third smallest (542).
Kokomo’s average of 921 fans per game is ranked 16th in the Northwoods League – Madison leads the league with an average of 5,932 while LaCrosse is second at 2,689. Interestingly, if Kokomo were still in the Prospect League, they would be fifth in the league in average attendance.
The Jackrabbits (15-17) have fallen to fourth place and are five games behind division leader and red-hot Traverse City (21-13), which has won nine consecutive games. Kokomo returns to the friendly confines of Municipal Stadium for America Night on July 3 – Fireworks will follow the 7:05 p.m. game against the Madison Mallards. Both teams will return to the field for a 1:05 p.m. Fourth of July matinee.