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Kalamazoo Wins 4-2 Behind Fleischli’s Strong Seven

KOKOMO, IN – After back-to-back nail biters, Kalamazoo needed a starting pitcher to take the pressure off of a heavily taxed bullpen. Nate Fleischli did just that. The righty from Stanford hurled seven frames of one run baseball, and the Growlers offense took advantage of a weak Kokomo pen to earn the victory.

Both starters, in fact, were strong. Kokomo right-hander Andrew Beauvais only gave up one run through five innings. The Growlers jumped on him in the first; Don Goodes and Brooks Coetzee led off the game with singles, and Henry Gargus singled in Goodes to put Kalamazoo in front.

Kokomo responded in the second. Martin Vincelli-Simard walked, advanced to second on an error, and Gavin Grant singled him home.

The game stayed locked at one until Beauvais left the ballgame. Jackrabbits manager Hayden Carter replaced him with lefty Roger Thomas, and Kalamazoo took advantage. Three runs scored on two hits and five walks; Thomas walked five of the eight batters he faced before being pulled. 

The Growlers held a three-run lead until the eighth, when Kokomo leadoff hitter Jakob Marshes singled, stole second, advanced to third on an error, and scored on a wild pitch. However, Adam Wheaton came in to close the game and shut the door, striking out two of the three batters he faced for his first save of the NWL season.

Kalamazoo heads back home after going 2-2 on this road trip. The Growlers have a chance to clinch the I-94 rivalry cup tomorrow night with a win over Battle Creek. First pitch from Homer Stryker is at 6:35.