Mallards give up three-run lead in loss to Growlers

Thousands of dollars’ worth of vandalism reported at Mallards stadium

The Madison Mallards couldn’t hold on to a three-run lead at the Duck Pond Tuesday, as the Kalamazoo Growlers stormed back to an 8-7 win.

Madison jumped out to an early 5-2 lead, thanks to a four-run second inning. Kalamazoo starter Larry Wood struggled for the first time this season, leaving the game in the second inning after surrendering three hits and walking three. Wood had not walked a batter in his previous three starts.

The Mallards held the lead until the fifth inning, where starter Mike Reitcheck appeared to have a tailor-made double play ball to lessen the damage. But an error in the infield would allow two runs to score, ending Reitcheck’s night. The newest addition to the Mallards, Westin Wuethrich, would enter in relief and received similar treatment from the defense. The second infield error of the inning would bring in two more, giving the Growlers the lead. The Mallards would record four errors total on the night.

The game would teeter back the Mallards way in the home half of the fifth, thanks to a Zach Jarrett single that brought in two. Jarrett would total three RBIs on the night, including an RBI triple that was a part of the four-run second inning. The two runs were the only runs Brauser would allow in his outing.

Ty Pennington would pitch two scoreless frames in relief of Wuethrich, striking out the side in the sixth inning. He would strand two runners in scoring position, allowing the Mallards to hold on to their two-run lead.

Troy Bacon came on in the eighth to try and preserve the lead. After giving up a leadoff single to the number nine hitter, Bacon would fire a 3-1 pitch to Connor Kopach, who would put his first home run of 2016 over the left field fence, giving the Growlers an 8-7 lead. Kalamazoo would never look back.

Troy Bacon gets stuck with his second loss of the season. Hayden Brauser earned the win, improving him to 2-0 on the season. He struck out five and walked three in his 7 1/3 innings of work.

Nate Palace extended his hit streak to nine games with a double in the fifth inning, where he would later come around to score. With his single in the first, Sam Armstrong (Jacksonville) has continued to reach safely in every game he’s appeared in this season.

The Mallards return to the Duck Pond tomorrow, Wednesday, June 22 nd , for a 7:05 pm game against the Kalamazoo Growlers.