Cardinals rally but can’t catch Panthers

For the second straight home game, the Hamilton Cardinals hosted the Kitchener Panthers at Bernie Arbour Stadium in IBL action on Sunday afternoon. The Panthers would score early and often while their defense would hold them just enough late in the game to defeat the Cardinals 9-8. Logan Stewart would go three-for-three at the plate for Hamilton and TJ Baker would hit a solo home run while Yorkis Borroto, Sean Reilly and Justin Interisano would all hit home runs for the visiting Panthers.

Kitchener got on the board first when Tanner Nivins hit a sacrifice fly to centre field that allowed Josh Garton to score. Their lead was then extended in their second at bats of the game. Colin Gordner would single in a run which was followed by Borroto reaching base on a fielder’s choice that scored a second run in the inning. Reilly capped off the inning with a three-run home run to give the Panthers a 6-0 lead.

In the home half of the second TJ Baker led off the inning with a solo home run to get Hamilton on the board. Connor Bowie and Laine Renaud then hit back to back singles before Stewart hit a sacrifice fly to centre to bring in Bowie and make it a 6-2 game.

The Panthers would get one run back in the top of the third when Interisano hit a lead-off solo home run off the right field light standard. In the fourth, Kitchener would get another home run, this one off the bat of Borroto for a pair of runs to go up by seven on the Cardinals.

Hamilton started to chip away at the lead in the fifth inning. Stewart singled and moved to second on a walk to Nate Mastervick. Jake Foden was then hit by a pitch to load up the bases before Jon Dziomba singled to plate a pair of runs. The next inning the Cardinals would see Connor Bowie hit a lead-off triple and scored on a Stewart single up the middle to cut the lead to 9-5.

In the Hamilton eighth inning, Baker and Renaud each drew walks before Stewart sent another single up the middle plating a run. With two outs in the inning Mastervick would then hit a double to plate another run with a third run crossing the plate in the inning on a throwing error that made it 9-8.

The Cardinals would look to keep the rally going in the bottom of the ninth as Chris Beer singled and later moved to second on Bowie’s two out walk. However, a strikeout would end any threat of the home side tying the game up.

For Hamilton, Dan Weagle took the loss, allowing nine runs, one of which was unearned, on ten hits, walking two and striking out one over five innings. Kyle Adoranti would enter the game to pitch the sixth and seventh innings, allowing two hits. Benson Merritt pitched the final two innings, hitting a batter and striking out two of the seven batters he faced.

For the Panthers, Sean Ratcliffe got the win, pitching five innings where he allowed four runs on seven hits, walking one and striking out four over five innings. Dylan Brooks came in to relieve Ratcliffe and pitch two innings, allowing a run on two hits and striking out two. Even DiMichele would start the eighth but only lasted a third of an inning, allowing three runs, two of which were earned, on one hit and two walks. Matt Vickers finished off the eighth innings, allowing a hit and striking out one. Noelvis Entenza picked up the save, pitching in the ninth, allowing a hit and a walk while striking out two.

Hamilton heads out on the road for a pair of games against the Kitchener Panthers at Jack Couch Park on Tuesday and Thursday of this week. The Cardinals will return home for a Friday night tilt with the Burlington Herd. All three games will start at 7:30 PM.

Source: Mike Marasco

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