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Cougars Fall in Extra Inning Thriller
In game two of the three game weekend series, it took extra innings to decide the winner. Starter Kyle Leja pitched seven strong innings, and turned it over to the bullpen for extras. The Cougars fell just short in a 3-2 loss.
Leja kept the Seahawk hitters off balance in his Cougar debut, giving up two hits, striking out five, and only allowing one earned run.
The Seahawks got on the board first when Kevin Sides reached base on a single, advanced to second on a passed ball, made it to third on a ground out to second baseman Chris Caudillo, and then scored on a wild pitch, making it 1-0.
The Cougars came right back in their half of the first as Caudillo and Zack Weber drew back to back walks with one out. Joel Felten then hit a fly ball to right field that popped out of the Seahawk outfielder's glove, making the bases loaded. Jefte Velez then drew the Cougars third walk of the inning which forced in a run, tying the game 1-1. Northwood starting pitcher Christopher Buddee then struck out Jon Rivera, and then induced a ground ball from Nate Krouse to end the threat.
Northwood again took the lead in the 3rd inning after Kevin Johnson was hit by a pitch, advanced to second on a stolen base, and eventually scored on a fielder's choice. The score was 2-1 until the Cougars had their last bats in the bottom of the seventh.
In the seventh, with two outs and no runners on, the Cougars again showed signs of life. Weber singled to center field, Felten then walked, and Velez singled to load the bases for Jon Rivera. Rivera then singled up the middle to tie the game 2-2. Seahawk pitcher Justin Helms, who earned the win, then got out of the jam striking out Krouse, forcing extra innings.
The Seahawks fought right back in the eighth, as Kyle Baitz came out of the bullpen for the Cougars to replace Leja. Baitz got two quick outs, but then three consecutive Seahawk singles scored the go head run, making the score 3-2.
Baitz took the loss for the Cougars, as they couldn't record the tying run, leaving Chmielewski on second base to end the game in the home half of the inning.
Joel Felten reached base all four at bats, drawing two walks, hitting a single, and reached in the first inning on an error by the right fielder. The Cougars seven hits were spread throughout the lineup, with no player having a multi hit game.
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