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Big Eighth Inning Dooms Chinooks in 7-4 Loss to Mallards

 

Mathematically and Mentally Eliminated Chinooks Take Loss

Lakeshore hoped to put on a quality baseball game for their fans on this last home stand of the season after being mathematically eliminated from the playoffs.  With Ryan Harris (Florida) on the mound, the Chinook pitching struggled, giving up a 7-4 loss to the Madison Mallards Tuesday night. Harris took the loss by giving up only 2 runs while his Madison counterpart Bobby Poyner was awarded the win.

“We gave up 2 runs in the sixth and I think our pitching kind of shut down after that,” said Head Coach John Vodenlich.  “The critical inning was the sixth and then a couple innings later we gave up a big inning.  Anytime you give up a big inning your chance of winning goes down drastically.”

Luke Maldonado (Madison College) started off the bottom of the third with a single that would eventually score after Charlie Markson (Notre Dame) and Forrest Chadwick (Southern Maine) both recorded outs to advance Maldonado to second and then third.  German Reyes (Winston Salem) brought Madonado home on an RBI single to right field to give the Chinooks the early lead.

Harris was lights out for the first 5 innings as he scattered 2 hits while striking out 7 before stumbling in the sixth.  The Mallards chased Harris with 88 pitches in the sixth after he allowed 2 runs on 2 hits in the inning.  Andrew Arenson (Carthage College), who recently re-joined the Chinooks, took over on the mound and struggled with his command from the start.  Arenson loaded the bases with a walk and a hit batter before getting Jacob Reese to ground out to Maldonado.

The Chinooks looked to tie up the game in the seventh when Drew Pearson (UW-Milwaukee) put the tying run aboard with a lead-off single.  Back-to-back bunt outs by Sergio Sanchez (Cabrillo College) and Maldonado advanced Pearson within 90 feet of home but the Chinooks couldn’t drive him in.

After Lakeshore threatened to spoil the Mallards lead, Jeff Zimmerman took the first pitch he saw from Kevin Nutley (St Norbert) deep over the right-center field wall to add an insurance run on the solo shot.  The Mallards then primed themselves for a big inning with Mike Reuvekamp drawing a walk and Travis Becherer reaching on a bunt single and advancing into scoring position on a throwing error by Nutley. With runners in scoring position and no outs, Vodenlich kept Nutley in the game, only to load the bases.  A 1-out grounder to Reyes looked to be double play potential but the relay wasn’t in time.

Just 1 out away from ending the disastrous eighth inning, Nutley couldn’t catch as break.  The third walk of the inning loaded the bases once more before Derek Fisher hit a bases clearing triple to blow the Mallards lead wide open at 7-1.  The Mallards managed 5 runs off of 3 hits in the inning.

The Chinooks rallied to load the bases with 2 outs in the bottom of the ninth for Chadwick who, to no surprise, came up clutch with a bases clearing, 3-run double.  The rally was too little, too late however as the Mallards slammed the door on the inning and the game with a bat tossing strikeout by Reyes.

The Chinooks return home tomorrow in a rematch against the Mallards for the highly sought after, “Robin Yount Bobblehead Day!”  Gates open at 5:30pm with the first 1,500 of the anticipated near 3,000 fans receiving a bobblehead.