Waterloo, IA – Tonight, when the Bucks welcomed the Willmar Stingers to open the second half of the season, it was the longest and most bizarre game of the season. It was also the first extra innings game of the year for the blue and yellow. The game lasted nearly four and a half hours and saw over 20 combined runs, 20 combined hits, 10 total errors, 19 walks, three hit batsmen, an ejection, a ten-run comeback, and even the sprinklers coming on prematurely. In the end, the visitors outlasted the hosts by a count of 14-13. With the loss, Waterloo falls to 19-17 while the Stingers improve to 21-15.
The guests struck first with one in the top of the first but the Bucks matched that in the bottom of the inning. Davis Hendrickson reached on a single, stole second and scored on a Kevin Kaczmarski double. In the top of the second, Willmar blew the game open with a six spot. The home team got one back in the bottom of the second on an RBI single from Jason Hockemeyer but the Stingers scored four more in the third to take a commanding 11-2 lead. They added another in the fourth to take their biggest lead of the game, 12-2.
Meanwhile on the mound, Jordan Foley was knocked out of the game early after pitching two innings and giving up seven runs, only two of which were earned, on three hits. He struck out three and walked five visiting hitters. In came Ty Taylor for an inning and he gave up four runs on two hits while walking three in an inning pitched. The pitching then settled down a little bit and Waterloo began to make their miraculous comeback.
They scored one in the bottom of the sixth on an RBI single from Thomas Lindauer scoring Sean Borman. The seventh is where they really turned the game around and did it all with two outs.
Kaczmarski led it off with a single and newcomer, Dan Sheppard (Iowa) got on after being hit by a pitch. Benny Roberts then singled to load them up. Two outs later, Riley Good and Hockemeyer brought in runs with back-to-back bases loaded walks. That cut the score to 12-5. Lindauer then laced a double to left-center field to bring in two runs and advanced to third allowing a third run to score on an error by the third baseman. Lindauer then scored during Davis Hendrickson’s at bat after he reached on another error by the third baseman. The score was 12-9 at that point.
The comeback continued the next inning when two more runners crossed the plate for Waterloo. Borman scored on a wild pitch and Villalobos scored on a Good single. The hosts would finally tie the game up in the bottom of the ninth on a sacrifice fly from Kaczmarski to bring in Lindauer.
The Stingers scored two in the top of the tenth to take a 14-12 lead and the home team would only manage to get one of those back as that’s where it would stand, 14-13.
After Taylor, the bullpen gave up three runs, only two of which were earned in seven innings of work. The effort was anchored by Kyle Kramp, Justin Grijalva and Kellen Camus. Camus does receive the loss however and moves to 0-2. Brady Anderson gets the win for Willmar and improves to 2-0 and Scott Lieser received his second save of the season.
At the plate, Lindauer led the way for Waterloo going 3-5 with two runs scored and four RBI. Roberts, Borman and Villalobos all scored twice and Good also chipped in three RBI by himself.
In other news, the Bucks announced the activation of LHP Ty Taylor (Oklahoma) and catcher/1B Dan Sheppard (Iowa) as well as the waiving of RHP Zachary Pettiford (Texas A&M-Kingsville).
Next up is the second game of this series on Friday with a 6:35 pm first pitch. Gates open at five for a happy hour. Keep checking back into www.waterloobucks.com for all of the latest information on the Cedar Valley’s Home Team.