Bombers Lose a Close Game and Are Swept by the Kokomo Jackrabbits

BATTLE CREEK, MI., – Battle Creek dropped the last of a two-game series 5-3 against the Kokomo Jackrabbits. The big story of the game was relief pitching. Kokomo scored all five of their runs against the Bombers starter, Isaac Van Dyke.

The Jackrabbits got on the board early as Camden Vasquez singled Jakob Marsee to third in the top of the first and then a throwing error allowed both runners to advance and Marsee scored. In the second, Marsee was able to drive in a run of his own on an RBI sacrifice fly that scored Ben Livorsi.

Battle Creek was able to get one run back in the third as Cristian Tejeda was hit by a pitch to lead off. A ground ball advanced Tejeda to second and on the next at-bat he stole third. Roman Kuntz stepped up with Tejeda 90 feet away and two outs and drove a ball off the wall in right-center field for an RBI double. The lead was cut to 2-1 Kokomo.

However, the Jackrabbits put up three more runs in the fourth and extended that lead. Marsee had his first hit of the game, and it was an RBI single that scored Ryan Ellis from second base. Chase Meidroth scored Adam Crampton on a sacrifice fly. Then Marsee scored on a dropped third strike which allowed TJ Fondtain to reach base making it 5-1.

The Bombers struck back in the fifth. Matt Catalfo and Trevor Patterson had back-to-back singles with one out and Kuntz walked to load the bases. Brian Zapp then beat out an infield hit that moved everyone around and score Catalfo from third. The Bombers would leave the bases loaded in the fifth for the second of three times in the game.

Although the Bombers were down 5-1 and were unable to make the comeback, the bright spots along the way was their relief pitching. Nolan LaMere came in relief of Van Dyke in the fourth. He pitched 1 1/3 of an inning walking two and striking out one. Local Pennfield High School graduate Cam Reichel pitched the last four innings after LaMere departed. Reichel did not allow a run while allowing two hits, an intentional walk, and struck out four. Three of those strike outs were in the ninth as he helped give the Bombers bats the opportunity to come back.

Battle Creek scored their final run in the eighth as Ray Hilbrich doubled to lead off the inning and scored on a wild pitch three batters later.

The Bombers would lose by the final score of 5-3 and fall to 7-16 in the second half. They welcome the Rockford Rivets to town on Saturday for a two game series before heading to Green Bay on Monday.


By Josh Baker