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Rivets fall in pitching duel versus Battle Creek

Rockford, Ill.- The Rivets’ offense was shut down by strong Battle Jack pitching on Thursday night. Battle Creek rode starting pitcher Keegan Batka to a three to one victory over Rockford.

 

Battle Creek did all its damage against Rivets starter Ty Rybarczyk in the second inning. Billy Hancock led off the inning with a single and after a Joey Grabanski lineout, the bottom of the Battle Creek lineup strung together three singles. Robbie Merced brought in a run with a sac fly and Bobby Nichols drove home another with an RBI single.

 

Rockford answered with one run in the bottom of the second as Matt Mebane scored after drawing a walk to start the inning. Mebane crossed home on a one out groundout from Drew Baker.

 

Outside of the second, Rybarczyk put together a pitching masterpiece. He pitched seven innings total, striking out seven and allowing just the three earned runs. Rybarczyk had not given up a run prior to this outing and his ERA now sits at 1.50.

 

Alex Pipes was a bright spot for the Rivets today. The reliever from Parkland College pitched two scoreless innings, allowing just one hit, and striking out three.

 

Batka was credited with the win after pitching six innings, allowing just four hits and one earned run. Typically a reliever, this was Batka’s longest outing of the season.

 

Rockford loaded the bases in the eighth with just one out, but Battle Jacks’ reliever Anthony Tejeda overpowered the Rivets bats to escape the jam. Tejeda pitched one and two-thirds innings and was credited with the save.

 

The loss drops Rockford’s record to 8-10 while Battle Creek improves to 11-6. Rockford will face Green Bay on Friday at 6:35 p.m.