Big first inning carries Bombers to an 8-5 victory over the Mallards
By Matt Sanders, Bombers broadcaster
The Battle Creek Bombers defeated the Madison Mallards 8-5 Saturday night at C.O. Brown Stadium. With the win, the Bombers improve to 7-8 in the second half of the season and 25-26 overall.
The Bombers got the scoring early on and never looked back. Shortstop Daniel Patzlaff led off the first inning with a double. After Jarrod Watkins hit into a groundout, both third baseman Ryan Dorow and center fielder Dean Miller walked to load the bases. Left fielder Daniel Jipping followed with a single, scoring Patzlaff to give the Bombers the 1-0 lead.
Catcher Jacob Blunt reached on an error by Madison first baseman Bryce Carter, which allowed Dorow and Miller to score to give the Bombers the 3-0 lead. First baseman Christian Helsel followed with a single to score Jipping, giving the Bombers the 4-0 lead.
With the Bombers leading 4-1 in the third inning, Dean Miller led off and reached second base on an error by Madison third baseman Nelson Maldonado. After Daniel Jipping and Jacob Blunt grounded out, Christian Helsel worked a two-out walk. Designated hitter Cody Sporrer hit a double to score Miller and Helsel to give the Bombers the 6-1 lead.
The Mallards would score in both the fifth inning and seventh inning to make it a 6-3 Bombers lead. Second baseman Jarrod Watkins led off the bottom of the seventh with a walk. Ryan Dorow would reach on an error. Dean Miller followed with a walk to load the bases. After Daniel Jipping popped out, Jacob Blunt hit a sacrifice fly to left field, scoring Watkins and giving the Bombers the 7-3 lead. Christian Helsel followed with a single. Ryan Dorow scored on the play but Dean Miller was thrown out at home plate for the final out of the inning, with the Bombers leading 8-3.
The Mallards scored two runs in the eighth inning, but Brandon Guske came on to pitch for the Bombers and get them out of the inning with an 8-5 lead, which would be the final score of the game.
Bombers starting pitcher Cody Puckett picked up his fourth win of the season. He went 6.1 innings and gave up eight hits. He allowed three runs but only two were earned. He allowed one walk and struck out a season-high eight batters.
The Bombers and Mallards square off again Sunday afternoon at 3:05 before having Monday off.