The Madison Mallards (14-8) received a strong pitching night from starter and relievers alike in a 4-2 win over the Kalamazoo Growlers (13-11) on Wednesday at Warner Park.
The Mallards wasted no time getting the offense going in the first inning, as Nico Hoerner led off the game with a double, advanced to third on a wild pitch, then scored on an RBI groundout by Matt McCann.
Matt Vierling then followed that with a single and a stolen base before scoring when Cameron Frost reached on an error.
With the 2-0 lead right out of the gates, the Mallards then extended it to 3-0 on a solo home run by Zach Jarrett in the fourth inning. Madison starting pitcher Mitchell Kilkenny made his Mallards debut and pitched five shutout innings.
The Growlers threatened in the sixth, scoring a pair of runs off reliever Alex Smith, but Luke Shilling got the Mallards out of a jam that inning and added another inning of work.
The Mallards picked up some insurance on Growler defensive miscues again in the seventh, as Nico Hoerner advanced to second on a wild pitch, then scored on another error by Kalamazoo shortstop Connor Kopach.
Luke Shilling, Logan Sherer and Troy Bacon combined to allow just two baserunners over the final two and two-thirds innings to seal the victory.
The Mallards remain at home Thursday night to face the Wisconsin Woodchucks at 7:05 p.m. at Warner Park. Coverage can be heard live on The Zone.