Mallards lose 6-3 as Bucks pitcher Scott Williams shuts down offense

Box Score

Madison, WI – June 16, 2009. The Mallards lost for the second time in a row and the second time in 11 games at home this season, falling to Waterloo in the opening game of a two-game set, 6-3, in front of 5,815 at the “Duck Pond” on Tuesday night. Portage, Wis. native Scott Williams led the Bucks to their third win in a row with seven brilliant innings on the mound.

Williams (UW-Stevens Point) gave up a run on five hits while striking out six and walking four to earn his first win of the season against just one loss. The lone run against the Waterloo (6-13) right-hander came in the first inning when Joe De Pinto (USC) smacked a 1-out triple to right center field before Joe Patterson (Oklahoma State) knocked him in with an RBI single to right center. He allowed three hits in the first inning prior to setting down 15 of the next 17 batters he faced into the sixth inning.

“He did a nice job keeping our hitters off balance,” Pitching Coach Jason Immekus said of the Waterloo hurler.

Starter Joe Yermal (Charlotte) did what he could until a right forearm strain forced him to exit after just three innings, but it was just an “err on the side of caution” according to Immekus.

The right-hander gave up four runs (3 earned) on four hits over his three innings of work. A shaky defense spilled over from last night’s loss to Green Bay, which consisted of four errors. The Mallards made two miscues in the first inning, both going to Jimmy Parque (St. John’s) as he misplayed a pair singles which turned into a couple of two base errors. Two runs crossed the plate in the frame to give the Bucks a 2-1 lead.

“If you play 68 of these things, you’re going to have a bad night or two like this,” Immekus said of the lengthy season condensed into just a few months. “You just have to forget about it and get back to your winning ways.”

The struggles continued in the third inning for the Mallard defense. The leadoff hitter, Tyler Robbins (Des Moines Area CC) reached base on an error by the shortstop De Pinto and scored when the next batter, Michael Giller (Illinois), hit a 2-run homer over the short porch in right field to make it 4-1.

Dan Burawa (St. John’s) relieved Yermal and pitched a scoreless fourth inning, but ran into some trouble in the fifth when a pair of singles, a walk and a hit by pitch led to two more Waterloo runs to make it 6-1 Bucks. He completed his outing by getting out of a jam in the sixth when he faced runners on second and third with only one out. He got Giller to fly out to left and then struck out Jason Krizan (Iowa) looking to end the inning.

The Mallards (13-6) staged a 2-out rally in the ninth inning with a Kurtis Muller (Iowa) single followed by a De Pinto’s RBI double to deep left center field. The next batter, Greg Bieker (Fort Hays State), then double down the right field line, driving in De Pinto to produce the final tally.

De Pinto finished 2-for-5 at the plate with an RBI and a pair of runs scored while Ben Long (UW-Milwaukee) and Jerrud Sabourin (Indiana) each finished 2-for-4 with two singles apiece. Brad Allen (Elgin CC) threw a scoreless inning of relief as did Nick Chmielewski (Illinois) and J.R. Graham (Santa Clara).

“He was great, not over-powering, but he mixed his pitches and kept us off balance,” De Pinto said of the Bucks’ starting pitcher. “It’s important tomorrow to come out and score some runs early and flush this game out of our system.”

Tomorrow, the Mallards will send Cody Winiarski (MATC) to the bump to face Waterloo’s Chris Pack (Villanova). Winiarski is 2-1 this year with a 2.42 ERA in three starts while Pack is 0-1 with a 2.95 ERA this season. First pitch will be at 7:05 at the “Duck Pond”.

Notes: Today’s game was the last for Mallard players currently under 10-day contracts. Those players include: Ben Long (UW-Milwaukee), Kevin Cahill (Purdue), Greg Bieker (Fort Hays State) and Brad Allen (Elgin CC).