The Sandusky Bay Ice Haulers came off a win last night, over the Grand Lake Mariners. Sandusky Bay was looking to get closer to clinching that playoff spot, as they took on the Galion Graders. Gino Sabatine (Senior, Marietta College) took the mound for the Ice Haulers, hoping to achieve his sixth win of the season.
The Ice Haulers drew first blood in the first inning, as the dangerous Scott Mackiewicz (Freshman, University of Toledo) hit a two-run blast to right field. This home run was Mackiewicz’s eighth of the season.
The Ice Haulers would get another run driven in the second inning, as Nick Mueller (Freshman, Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi) hit a solo shot to right field. This gave the Haulers a 3-0 lead.
In the bottom of the third, Sandusky Bay would drive in three more runs. The inning began with the Ice Haulers putting the first three men on base, with back-to-back singles and a walk. Nolan O’Connell (Freshman, University of Findlay) was then hit by a pitch, with the bases loaded. The hit-by-pitch drove in the designated hitter, Mark Connelly (Sophomore, Lansing Community College). Nick Mueller had his second RBI of the game, as he hit a single to shallow right field, to score the catcher, Three Hillier (Freshman, Liberty University). Zachary Campbell (Senior, Tiffin University) would tally an RBI, to score his college teammate, Bryce Richey (Junior, Tiffin University). The big third inning gave Sandusky a 6-0 lead.
With the Ice Haulers leading 6-0, the Graders were not going to go down without a fight. In the top of the fifth, the Graders would stun Gino Sabatine with a grand-slam, and a two-run blast to tie the game. Sabatine would finish the game going 4.1 innings. He would allow seven hits and six earned runs. However, Sabatine would tally up six strikeouts.
Tied at six runs respectively, the Ice Haulers regained the lead, as Scott Mackiewicz struck the Graders again with a solo shot to right field. Mackiewicz now has nine home runs on the season.
In the top of the seventh, the Graders would give themselves a solo shot, to tie the game again at seven apiece.
In the bottom of the seventh, Sandusky Bay drove in four runs to not only take the lead, but to open the gap. Mark Connelly would have a two-RBI single, but an error in the Grader outfield caused another run to come into score for the Haulers. This gave the Ice Haulers a 10-7 lead. Later in the inning, Bryce Richey would hit an RBI single to give the Haulers an 11-7 lead.
The Ice Haulers were not finished, as they extended their lead in the eighth inning. Nick Mueller would have his second home run of the season, as he hit a three-run blast to right field. Mueller now has seven home runs on the season, with 25 RBIs.
The Ice Haulers would win the game, with a score of 14-7. The Ice Haulers are now just one victory, or one Jet Box defeat away from clinching a playoff spot.
More to mention from this game, Scott Mackiewicz continues to strive for that triple-crown, as he leads the league in RBIs and home-runs. However, he stands at fourth in batting average. “Honestly, the triple crown is not a primary goal for me. It would be great to achieve, however my primary goal is to lead our team to the playoffs and get to the championship. I hope everyone continues to see the ball well, and we keep getting big hits,” Mackiewicz said.
The Ice Haulers will travel to Lima, to take on the Locos. The Locos stand behind Sandusky Bay 4.5 games back in the North division. The Haulers will not only look to extend their lead for first place, but to clinch their playoff spot tomorrow. The game will start at 7:00pm.