Mallards Even Up Home Stand with a Win Over Rafters
by Peter Geppert
Madison, WI – July 28, 2012. An efficient 8.0 inning, 97 pitch outing by Mallards starter Matt LaMothe (Georgia State) setup a 5-2 Madison Mallards (15-5, 31-24) victory over the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (7-14, 23-32) in front of packed house at the “Duck Pond.” With the win the Mallards took the rubber match of the three game series.
The Rafters got off to a fast start in the first inning, scoring one run via an RBI double by right fielder Brandon Downes (Virginia) that brought home shortstop Jordan Dreiling (Kansas).
The lead would not last long though, as Mallards right fielder Tyler Marincov (North Florida) tied the game in the second inning with a solo blast to left field.
Mallards left fielder Derek Fisher (Virginia) broke the tie in the third inning with a two RBI line drive into the gap that scored catcher Mike Reuvekamp (California) and shortstop Tom Verdi (Connecticut).
The Mallards capitalized on a throwing error by Rafters starter Kyle Wormington (Valparaiso) in the fifth inning to score another run, pushing their lead to 4-1. With center fielder John Welborn (Texas-San Antonio) stealing third, Wormington airmailed a ball over the head of the third baseman Brandon Hohl (Illinois), allowing Welborn to head home.
Errors continued to plague the Rafters in the sixth inning when a misplayed grounder by the shortstop Dreiling allowed Mallards first baseman Jeff Zimmerman (Northern Illinois) to score from third.
Hohl would not be discouraged, as his solo homer in the seventh inning off LaMothe brought the Rafters to within three runs.
That was all the Rafters could muster, as Mallards closer John Hamilton (UNC-Charlotte) came in to pitch a shutdown ninth inning to earn his 10th save of the season.
LaMothe (5-3) got the win for the Mallards after a stellar 8.0 innings of work on the mound that saw him give up two runs on four hits while striking out six.
Wormington (2-4) took the loss for the Rafters, going 6.0 innings and surrendering five runs on eight hits and four hit batsmen.
News and Notes:
The 8.0 innings of work by LaMothe was the longest outing by a Mallards starting pitcher this season.
With his solo blast in the second inning, Marincov ended a home run drought that went back to an 8-6 win over the Eau Claire Express (8-12, 19-35) on July 6th.
With the win tonight the Mallards and Rafters finished their ten game season series with the Rafters edging out a 6-4 record.
As the Mallards continue their chase of the Woodchucks for the second half South Division title and a spot in the post-season, the Mallards will continue to keep an eye on the Woodchucks the rest of the season…
Scoreboard Watch: Woodchucks 9, Bullfrogs 6 Bottom 7th
The Mallards welcome the La Crosse Loggers (11-8, 37-17) to the “Duck Pond” tomorrow, July 29th to start a four game series. That night will be MINI of Madison Mini Cooper Roadster Maynard Garden Gnome Night at the ballpark.