KENOSHA, Wis. — The Kenosha Kingfish (1-5) dropped two seven-inning games to the Kalamazoo Growlers (4-2) on Sunday at Historic Simmons Field by a final score of 4-3 and 7-4, respectively.
The Growlers got on the board in the top of the first inning of game one on a bases loaded walk to Anthony Cocco (Grand Valley State). Hunter Thorn (Purdue Northwest) then picked up a pair of two out RBI on a line drive base hit back up the middle to give Kalamazoo the early 3-0 edge.
Kenosha got a run back in the bottom of the first when Joey Scaffidi (Wisconsin-Milwaukee) was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. Then Ryan Knernschield (Eastern Illinois) worked a walk to plate Nate Thomas (Saint Joseph’s) and make the score 3-2.
The Kingfish loaded the bases with no outs in the second inning, but Growlers starting pitcher Ralph Gambino (Duke) got out of the jam with a pop out, a strike out and a ground out, respectively.
Harry Orth (Wisconsin-Oshkosh) relieved starting pitcher Caleb Larson (Illinois) and threw four scoreless innings, allowing just one hit and two walks.
But Kalamazoo added another run in the sixth inning on a Jimmy Sullivan (Virginia) double into the left field corner that scored Jacob Hoover (Hillsdale) from first base to extend the Growlers’ lead to two at 4-2.
The Kingfish loaded the bases in the sixth inning with one out, but Kalamazoo brought on Max Bain (Northwood) to get out of the jam unscathed.
Kenosha scored a run in the seventh inning on a Brian Vance (Saint Joseph’s) single to score his college teammate, Thomas, but Bain got RJ Pearson (Oral Roberts) to strikeout with a runner on third to escape with a 4-3 win in game one.
Kalamazoo struck first again in game two on a bases loaded walk followed by Michael Sears’ (Sinclair) first hit of season on a flare to right field to score two more. Then Sullivan ripped a single back up to middle to score Brooks Coetze (Notre Dame). Shea Kramer (Utah) drove in another pair with a base hit to give the Growlers an early 6-0 lead.
Thomas came around to score on a Knernschield base knock to put the Kingfish on the board at 6-1 in the fourth inning.
Thomas got back in the action in the fifth inning with an RBI single to score Mitchell Buban (Wisconsin-Milwaukee) to make the score 6-2. The Saint Joseph’s product was the lone hitter for either team with multiple hits in game two today, going 2-for-4.
Growlers starting pitcher Alexander Nolan (Brock) exited the game after five innings with a final line of two runs, seven hits, one walk and four strikeouts.
Tanner Fallon (Loras) kept the Kingfish within striking distance with three perfect innings in relief of starting pitcher Nate Seprosky.
In the sixth inning, Growlers added to their lead on an Cocco RBI single, but the Kingfish scored two runs on a two-out error to inch closer at 7-4.
Michael Dunkelberger (Indiana) retired Kenosha in order in the seventh to lock up the series sweep.