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Published On: June 25th, 2021

ROCKFORD, ILL — The Kalamazoo Growlers battled hard, but dropped both legs of Thursday’s doubleheader against the Rockford Rivets, dropping game one 9-8, and game two 5-4.

The Growlers powered ahead in the first leg thanks to plenty of early offense. Catcher Devin Burkes laced a no-doubt solo home run to left center in the top of the second to give Kalamazoo the early 1-0 lead. After two runs from Rockford, the Growlers responded with a 7-spot in the top of the fourth, which saw Burkes add 2 more RBIs on a double, a Damon Lux RBI double, an RBI sac fly from David Coppedge, and a Don Goodes RBI single that turned into a trip around the bases following a nasty kick past the Rivets’ outfield.

Kalamazoo led 8-2 after three and a half. Unfortunately, this would not be enough. A combination of relievers could not hold onto the lead. A 30-minute rain delay in the middle of the 5th inning also did not help matters. Ultimately, three runs in the ninth powered Rockford to a 9-8 victory.

In game two, the roles were reversed. Rockford scored three in the bottom of the first, tacking on another in the fourth. This time, Kalamazoo played from behind, Satchell Wilson scored twice in the first four innings via RBIs from Cooper Doughman and Dom Pitelli. Luke Storm scored on a double play ball in the fifth, and the comeback was completed by a first and third “pickle play,” scoring Brooks Coetzee in the seventh.

The Growlers late rally, followed by a combined five and a third scoreless from Collin Witzke and Nate Fleischli sent the game to a 10th inning.

In the bottom of the 10th, Rockford loaded the bases with nobody out, before Pitelli and Wilson both made impressive plays up the middle to nail runners at the plate, including a no-look sidearm throw from Pitelli, with his momentum taking him the opposite direction. However, it was not enough as the winning run was walked in with two outs and the Rivets ultimately took game two.

The Growlers now sit at 10-15 on the season. They’ll play one more in Rockford Friday night, with first pitch at 7:05 p.m. ET.