LETHBRIDGE – Despite a strong start on the back of the long ball, a handful of errors on Tuesday, June 12, by the Lethbridge Bulls helped the Medicine Hat Mavericks come from behind to win 9-7. The loss drops the Bulls to 2-8 on the season and last in the Western Division.
Bulls starter Liam Sabiston had a tough first inning, but with two outs and runners on second and third he was able to get out of the jam with the game still scoreless.
Then after the Bulls first batter couldn’t get aboard in the bottom of the first, catcher Brett Mercier came up behind him and singled to right field.
Outfielder Lachlan Mayo got up to bat next and smoked a two-run homerun off Medicine Hat pitcher Alex Dafoe to give the Bulls a 2-0 lead. The homer was Mayo's second of the season.
In the second inning Sabiston got himself in trouble again, loading the bases, before striking out the Mavericks Louie Canjura to get out of the jam.
After a scoreless in the bottom half of the inning, Sabiston was back up and battling again. A deep fly to center dropped and scored one for Medicine Hat, making it 2-1 Bulls and then a sacrifice fly by Jaxson Hooge tied the game.
In the bottom of the third, a two-run home run by Bulls outfielder Jesse Hilyard gave them a 4-2 lead but the Bulls did strand two runners to end the inning.
Sabiston’s night was done after an error at first base and a hit put two Mavericks on at the top of the 4th inning for Medicine Hat. Sabiston finished the game with 3.1 innings pitched, five hits allowed, three runs, two earned runs, five walks and a strikeout.
Pitcher Kale Penner entered the game, and subsequently gave up a run on a sacrifice fly but forced a ground out to keep the lead at 4-3 heading to the bottom of the 4th. The Bulls couldn’t muster any offence, and when Penner returned to the mound for the top of the 5th inning is when things started coming apart.
The Mavericks scored four runs in the inning, to go ahead 7-4, and chase Penner from the game after just 0.2 innings pitched.
Pitcher Kyle Poapst entered the game and finished with the best stat line of any Bulls pitcher on the night, going 3.2 innings giving up two hits, two runs, two earned runs, two walks and a strikeout, but the two runs added by the Mavericks would be all they’d need.
The Bulls didn’t roll over, adding three runs of their own in the final four innings on the back of 12 hits overall in the game, but couldn’t overcome three errors committed earlier in the game.
The standout on Tuesday was Lachlan Mayo, who went 3-for-4 at the plate to go along with a home run and two runs batted in.
Next up for the Bulls is a matchup against the Brooks Bombers on Thursday, June 14, back at Spitz Stadium. The Bombers are the closest team to the Bulls in the Western Division at 3-6 on the season.
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