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Battle Creek Downs Kingfish

KENOSHA, Wis. – The Kenosha Kingfish (5-8) lost to the Battle Creek Bombers (5-8) on Sunday afternoon at Simmons Field by a final score of 9-2.

Mitchell Buban (Wisconsin-Milwaukee) collected Kenosha’s first hit, stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on a passed ball to give the Kingfish a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning.

Buban was the lone Kingfish batter to collect multiple hits on Sunday, going 2-for-4.

Jack Merrifield (Louisiana State-Eunice) answered with a solo home run to left field in the fifth inning to tie the game at one. The home run was the first the Kingfish pitching staff had given up, snapping a 12-game streak.

Josh Sears (Freed Hardeman), Kolby Johnson (Central Arkansas), Merrifield and Matthew Patton (Central Arkansas) hit back-to-back-to-back-to-back two out singles to score Roy Thurman, Sears and Johnson to give Battle Creek a 4-1 lead in the sixth inning.

Kingfish starting pitching Kaleb Schmidt (Drury) exited the game after the four consecutive base hits. Prior to offensive outburst, he had allowed just two hits. He finished with a final line of 5 2/3 innings pitched and four runs allowed on six hits and four walks to go along with four strikeouts.

Battle Creek added to its lead with five runs in the seventh inning. The Bombers got the first run on an error. Then Kelby Weyler (Lamar) scored his team-leading 13th run on a Johnson single to right field that also plated Roy Thurman (Akron).  Merrifield drove in another with a sacrifice fly to deep right field. Erik Owen (Tyler) drove in the fifth run on a hit by pitch that made the score 9-1.

RJ Pearson (Oral Roberts) knocked in Nate Thomas (Saint Joseph’s) in the bottom half of the seventh on a sacrifice fly that a Johnson diving catch prevented from splitting the right-center field gap.

Thomas went 1-for-2 on the day with a pair of walks in addition to the run.

The diving play was just a small part of a 3-for-5 day for Johnson, who also had three RBI.

Battle Creek starting pitcher Josh Hranicky (Lamar) was lifted in the seventh after facing two batters and finished with one earned run allowed over six innings pitched on three hits and three walks.

Ping-Chun Ho (Barry) closed out the game with a one-two-three ninth inning to secure a 9-2 Bomber victory.

Hranicky was the pitcher of record for Battle Creek, while Schmidt took the loss for Kenosha.

The Kingfish and Bombers will face off again on Monday at Simmons Field at 6:35 p.m.