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Yermal provides lift, Mallards roll to 5-0 victory

Madison, WI – August 9, 2008. Joe Yermal (Charlotte) silenced the Waterloo Bucks bats at the “Duck Pond” Saturday night, working seven shutout innings and allowing just five hits, while striking out eight. The Bucks did not see a baserunner advance to third base. The 5-0 Mallards victory in front of 7,454 fans was the team’s third shutout of the season, and improves their record to 34-32 overall and 12-21 in the second half. The Mallards right-hander struck out at least one batter in each of the innings he worked and threw 106 pitches on the night. Yermal won for the fourth time in his last five starts and moves his record to 4-0 on the year.

Rob Lyerly (Charlotte) was 2-for-4 on the night with an RBI. Eric Nielsen (Purdue) was 1-for-2 and also drove in a run. Three other Mallards tallied a hit in the game off Bucks starter Derek Ott and a pair of relievers. Michael Giller and James Jones each had two hits for the Bucks, who fell to 31-33 overall and 17-15 in the second half with the loss.

After Yermal worked through the Bucks order in the first, the Mallards scored a run in the bottom of the first thanks to a walk and an error. The Bucks had two-out baserunners in each of the next two frames but could not break through against the big right-hander. Even though he was trailing 1-0, Ott held the Mallards hitless through three innings, making it back-to-back nights that the Mallards did not have a base hit until the fourth.

Joe Bonadonna (Illinois) doubled to the wall in left field to start the fourth and moved to third on a one-out groundout to first by Rob Lyerly (Charlotte). Bonadonna then stole home to give the Mallards a 2-0 advantage. The Mallards added two more in the bottom of the fifth, highlighted by a Nielsen single to right that scored Luke Stewart (UAB) and Josh Groves (UW-Milwaukee).

Yermal continued his dominance in the top of the sixth, as he got a ground ball right back to him for the first out and back-to-back strikeouts after a Jones single. Bonadonna was hit by a pitch to start the sixth and came around to score on an RBI single by Lyerly. The RBI was Lyerly’s 48th of the season, adding to his new team record.

Yermal hit a batter in the seventh, his last inning of work, but the Bucks could get nothing going yet again. Ott’s night was finished in the bottom of the seventh as he was relieved by Collin Johnson. Ott worked six innings on the night, allowing four hits and just two earned runs. He took the loss and dropped to 2-5 on the year.

Andy Deain (Northern Illinois) and Nathan Kafka (Minnesota State) each pitched an inning to finish the game, with Deain allowing one base hit and striking out two. The Mallards finished the regular season with a 20-14 record at the “Duck Pond.”

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The Mallards now travel to Battle Creek for the last two games of the regular season Sunday afternoon and Monday night. The playoffs begin on Tuesday, with the Mallards hosting a playoff game at the “Duck Pond” on either Tuesday or Wednesday. Stay tuned to mallardsbaseball.com for all the details as they become available. Playoff tickets are now onsale and can be purchased by visiting mallardsbaseball.com or by calling 608.246.4277.