Despite three runs driven in from Jeff Gardner, the Evansville Otters faltered late as they lost 7-6 to the River City Rascals on Saturday night at Bosse Field in front of 2,525 fans.
Gardner laced an RBI single to left to bring home Ryan Long with the first run of the game in the bottom of the first inning.
River City plated two in the second to take the lead. A throwing error from Joe DeLuca allowed a run to score and then a bases loaded walk to Paul Kronenfeld forced home the second run of the inning.
Gardner put the Otters back in front with a two-run double in the bottom of the third.
The Rascals responded with two more runs in the top of the fourth. An RBI groundout from J.D. Hearn tied the game and then Kevin Suarez put the Rascals in front with an RBI single.
River City extended their lead to three on a two-run single from Suarez in the top of the sixth.
In the seventh, Evansville scored three runs to tie the game up at 6-6. Long drew a bases loaded walk to plate the first run of the inning and the next hitter Toby Thomas bounced into a fielder’s choice, but a throwing error from the catcher Gage West allowed David Cronin to score. With the bases loaded again, Travis Harrison worked a walk that pushed the tying run across the plate.
River City generated a run in the top of the ninth on a Braxton Martinez sacrifice fly to take a 7-6 lead.
The Otters got the tying run to second base in the bottom of the frame, but Joe Iorio shut the door as he got Joe Lytle to ground out and end the ball game 7-6 in favor of the Rascals.
Tyler Beardsley is issued his second loss of the season after allowing the go-ahead run in the top of the ninth.
Tanner Wilt picks up the win as he allowed two runs in two innings without issuing a hit but walking four batters.
Otters starter Austin Nicely takes a no-decision. Nicely threw five innings, allowing four runs, two earned, on four hits and four strikeouts.