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Timber Rattlers win twice Saturday

The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers finished off Friday’s suspended game with a run in the bottom of the tenth inning to defeat the Cedar Rapids Kernels 4-3 on Saturday night at Neuroscience Group Field.  The win was the third straight for the Rattlers, their third straight one-run win over the Kernels, and their second straight walkoff victory.

The scored started in the second inning on Friday night.  Eduardo García led off the bottom of the second inning with a check-swing grounder that rolled into shallow right.  García turned that into a hustle double.  Then, Darrien Miller walked.  A passed ball moved both runners up a base.  Cedar Rapids starting pitcher Kyle Jones threw a wild pitch moments later to allow García to score the first run of the game.

Tyler Woessner, Wisconsin’s starting pitcher, retired the first nine batters he faced before running into trouble in the fourth inning.  Three walks loaded the bases with one out.  Woessner got a strikeout for the second out and was ahead of Andrew Cossetti with a 1-2 count.  Cossetti put the ball in play and got a grounder off Woessner.  The ball trickled behind the mound and Woessner could not pick the ball up cleanly as two runners scored to give the Kernels a 2-1 lead.

Wisconsin tied the game in the bottom of the fourth.  García started the inning with a walk and Miller followed with a bunt single.  Jose Acosta singled sharply to right to load the bases with one out.  Terence Doston was next, and he lined a single to left to score García with the tying run.

The Kernels took the lead in the top of the sixth inning against reliever Justin King.  Emmanuel Rodriguez doubled and took third on a flyout to right.  King got the second out with a popup, but through a wild pitch to all Rodriguez to score for a 3-2 lead.

Joe Gray Jr was hit by a pitch from Malik Barrington with two outs in the bottom of the seventh.  Gray stole second, scrambled for third after the throw from Cossetti bounced into center.  Rodriguez fielded the ball and tried to get Gray at third. Instead, the ball made it into the Cedar Rapids dugout and Gray was able to trot home with the tying run.

Play was halted after Sam Gardner got the final out of the top of the ninth inning on Friday.  Gardner walked two and struck out four over two hitless, scoreless innings of relief to give Wisconsin a chance to win the game when the game started tonight.

Wisconsin went down in order in the bottom of the ninth against Kernels reliever AJ Labas to send the game to extra innings.

Tanner Shears pitched the top of the tenth with the go-ahead run starting at second base.  Shears struck out the first two batters but walked the next two and the bases were loaded for Jorel Ortega.  Shear got the strikeout to end the inning with the game still tied.

Labas came out for the bottom of the tenth with Robert Moore at second base.  He walked Matt Wood intentionally.  Gray sent a high chopper to short with the only play to first base for the first out of the inning.  Labas walked Hendry Mendez intentionally to load the bases for García.

García sent a little dribbler the third base line.  Ben Ross charged and fielded the ball, but his offline throw to the plate would have been late as Moore scored the game-winning run.

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