KENOSHA, Wis. – The Kenosha Kingfish (11-18) fell to the Kalamazoo Growlers (12-14) on Tuesday night at Historic Simmons Field by a final score of 8-4.
The Growlers struck first in the top of the first inning when Shea Kramer (Utah) scored on a Miko Rodriguez (Texas A&M) infield single to give the team a 1-0 lead.
Clay Owens (Southern California) knocked in Austin Knight (Tennessee) on a line drive base hit in the second inning. Then Gabe Rivera (Miami) drove in Kramer on a soft liner back up the middle to give Kalamazoo a 3-0 lead.
Jake Topolski (Duke) scored Knight in the third inning on a safety squeeze to extend Kalamazoo’s lead to 4-0.
Roberto Pena (Florida) drove in Kenosha’s first run in the fourth inning on a line drive base hit to right field that scored Zach Nogalski (Wisconsin-Milwaukee) from second base to put Kenosha on the board at 4-1.
Nogalski reached base four times on Tuesday, going 2-for-3 with two walks and a run scored.
Drew Blakely (Virginia) scored on an error in the fifth inning. Then Zach Gelof (Virginia) knocked in two more with a double on a fly ball that fell just outside the reach of a diving Mike Jarvis (San Diego State) to make the score 7-1.
Growlers starting pitcher Braydon Nelson (St. Bonaventure) went a season-long 6 2/3 innings and scattered seven hits and three walks to allow just one run.
Pena drove in another run in the eighth inning on a fly ball to no man’s land down the right field that dropped between Topolski and Rodriguez to cut Kenosha’s deficit to five at 7-2.
Pena went 2-for-5 on the night and drove in two runs. The game follows a 2-for-3 three RBI performance on Sunday by Pena.
Kalamazoo took an 8-2 lead in the top of the ninth on a throwing error.
Nate Thomas (Saint Thomas) and Ryan Knernschield (Eastern Illinois) drove in the first two runs allowed this season by Growlers closer Eamon Horwedel (Ohio) in the bottom of the ninth, but he was able to escape a jam to preserve an 8-4 Kalamazoo win.
Braydon Nelson got the win for Kalamazoo, while Caleb Larson (Illinois) took the loss for Kenosha.
The Growlers and Kingfish will play again on Wednesday, June 26, at 7:05 p.m. at Historic Simmons Field.