By: Ari Ross, Broadcaster
In a back-and-forth game, the Battle Creek Bombers fell to the Madison Mallards 5-4 at Warner Park Thursday Night.
With Max Ritchie on the hill for the Bombers, the Mallards struck first in the bottom of the fourth, taking a 2-0 lead. Nico Hoerner, who wasn't retired by the Bombers on the night, led off the bottom of the third with a single, and Matt Vierling followed with a double. With runners on second and third, Lucas Halstead hit an infield single to score Hoerner, and Vierling scored on Sam Armstrong's ground out, giving the Mallards a two-run lead.
But the Bombers battled back in the top of fifth starting with the leadoff hitter Cody Sporrer, who launched a solo home run over the wall in left-center field to cut the Mallards lead to one. Jarrod Watkins followed Sporrer's homer with a single, but was thrown out at second trying to steal second base.
With one out and nobody one base, Nick Podkul drew a walk, and three straight singles by Daniel Jipping, Kevin Dupree and Nick Poirier tied the game at 2. Dan Swain followed Poirier's single with a sacrifice fly, giving the Bombers their first lead in the top of the fifth. Ryan Dorow would knock in another run on his RBI single, and the Bombers would lead the Mallards, 4-2, heading to the bottom of the sixth.
In the bottom of sixth, Nate Palace and AJ Motoya singled, giving the Mallards runners at first and second with one out. After Matt McCann flew out to deep center, Hoerner plagued the Bombers yet again, launching a three-run home run over the short-porch in left field to give the Mallards a 5-4 lead.
The Mallards bullpen would hold the Bombers to two hits after the fifth as the Bombers would fall 5-4, dropping to 9-8 on the season.
Ritchie picks up the loss for the Bombers, dropping to 0-2 on the season as he pitched 6.1 innings, allowing 6 runs on 10 hits, striking out two. Chase Hoag picked up the win for the Mallards, his first of the season, while Troy Bacon got the save, his second of the year.
The Bombers will look to split the two-game series Friday night against the Madison Mallards (11-6) as the two teams finish the series at 7:05 CST/8:05 EST at Warner Park.