The Battle Creek Bombers defeated the Lakeshore Chinooks, 5-2 Friday night at C.O. Brown Stadium as they jumped out to an early lead and held on in the ninth for the win.
The Chinooks would load the bases against Scott Sency in the top of the first on three straight singles but Sency would get Hayden Senger to pop out to end the threat. The three runners stranded by Sency would be three of the 13 runners the Chinooks would leave on base against the Bombers.
And after Sency got out of the jam, the Bombers took the lead in the bottom of the inning as Christian Helsel launched a solo shot, his fifth home run of the season, over the left field wall to give Battle Creek a 1-0 lead against Austin Havekost and the Lakeshore Chinooks.
The Bombers would add to their lead in the bottom of the third as Eric Gilgenbach reached on an error and Jacob Blunt followed with a single to put runners at first and second with nobody out. Helsel would lay down a sacrifice bunt to move the runners 90 feet before Nick Podkul's sacrifice fly scored Gilgenbach, extend the Bombers' lead to 2-0.
Dean Miller would follow Podkul's sac fly with an RBI single to make it 3-0, scoring Blunt from second and after Daniel Jipping walked, putting runners at first and second, Storm Joop's RBI single score Miller and gave the Bombers a 4-0 lead.
On the mound, the Bombers continued to put up zeros as Sency pitched 2.0 scoreless innings after the first, Puckett threw 2.0 scoreless innings, relieving Sency after the third and Krystien Johnson Battilana relieved Puckett in the sixth, throwing 2.0 scoreless innings as well.
Battle Creek would tack on another run in the bottom of the sixth as Cooper Marshall singled and came around to score on Gilgenbach's RBI double, extending the lead to 5-0.
Lakeshore would come back with two in the eighth off Austin Bueter, but Jonathan Cheshire would come in and nail down the four-out save for the Bombers.
Puckett picks up the win for the Bombers, who move to 37-32 on the season, tying their second-largest win total, set in 2009. With the loss, the Chinooks fall to 33-37. With the Bombers clinched the No. 3 seed in the Northwoods League Playoffs and will travel to Madison to take on the Mallards in the first game on the playoffs on Monday.
The Bombers will finish off the regular season with a three-game set against the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters, starting at 4:05 Saturday afternoon as they resume a suspended game from Wisconsin Rapids in the bottom of the second inning.