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OFFENSE ERUPTS IN 14-5 WIN

Thunder Bay (ONT) The Waterloo Bucks expressed their gratitude to the Thunder Bay Border Cats’ staff for their efforts getting Friday’s game in, by scoring seven runs in the first inning on their way to a 14-5 romp.

Pat MacKenzie drilled the first homer and triple of the season for the team, while Jake Mahon had four hits including three doubles. All nine batters in the line-up scored at least once and five players total had multiple hits.

It was an offensive explosion that nearly didn’t occur after heavy rains fell all afternoon in Thunder Bay, but the Border Cats staff managed to get the field playable. A postponement would’ve meant the game would’ve been made up in mid July and not count towards the first-half standings. The teams waited through a two-hour delay before eventually firing the first pitch.

MacKenzie led off the game with the Bucks’ first home run of the season, a shot over the right field wall that started a seven run first inning. Connor McClain followed with a double and then four consecutive walks to Chesny Young, David Kerian, Jake Mahon and Kyle Pollock forced in two more runs and the Bucks were up 3-0.

Marcos Calderon then singled in a run with a shot to left and the Bucks were up 4-0 without an out recorded.

After a pair of strikeouts, MacKenzie came up again with the bases loaded and walked in another run making it  5-0.  McClain then struckout, but the ball bounced away from the catcher Dylan Goodwin allowing the inning to continue and another run to score.

Young capped the scoring with a RBI single and the Bucks were up 7-0.

Thunder Bay plated a pair of runs in the second, but the Bucks answered back with a three-run fourth inning highlighted by Blake Hickman’s two-run single and Waterloo was up 10-2

Thunder Bay would score three of their own in the bottom of the fifth to make the score 10-5 but wouldn’t get any closer.

Reliever Drasen Johnson came in and shut the door, allowing no runs on three hits over 4.1 innings of relief to pick up the win.

The Bucks finished the scoring picking up two more runs in the fifth and two more in the eighth highlighted by MacKenzie’s RBI triple which is the first of the season for Waterloo.

The Bucks set season-highs in runs (14) and hits (14) and coupled with Willmar’s game being postponed in Duluth, move a full-game up in the North Division with five games left.