MADISON, Wis. — On Thursday night at the Duck Pond, the Madison Mallards (4-5, 23-21) fell to the Lakeshore Chinooks (6-3, 24-20) 8-4. The early innings featured offensive fireworks, but both pitching staffs settled in as the game progressed.
To begin the ballgame, both offenses came out crushing the baseball. Lakeshore tallied a pair of runs in the top half of the first on a two-run bomb by Rylan Thomas. However, Madison’s offense responded immediately. The Mallards leadoff man, and all-star, Cole Daily (Notre Dame) crushed a leadoff dinger to start the bottom of the first. The home run was Daily’s first of the season and pulled Madison within a run. The Mallards were not finished in the inning as Sam Armstrong (Jacksonville) knocked in Doran Turchin (Illinois) on a base hit. After one, the game was tied at two apiece.
The Chinook lineup kept their pedal on the gas as the game progressed and they tallied runs in both the second and third innings. However, Madison starter Tristen Bayless (Texas A&M) was able to control the damage as the Chinooks stranded a total of five base runners in the frames. Bayless would hold the dangerous Chinooks scoreless for the rest of his outing. He exited after five and the Mallards trailed 4-2.
After the electric first inning, the Madison bats went cold. It took until the bottom of the sixth for the Mallards offense to ignite thanks to the bat of Turchin. With the Mallards trailing 5-2, Turchin smashed a two run shot into the Budweiser Rooftop to bring the Mallards within one. Turchin, who will be participating in the 2017 NWL Home Run Derby, now has nine home runs this season.
While the Mallards drew within striking distance, the Lakeshore lineup refused to be held down. The Chinooks tallied three runs in the top of the eighth to extend their lead to 8-4. Lakeshore relievers Marshall Oetting and Nick Campe were dominant in the final three innings and kept the Mallards off the board.