The Brandon Cloverleafs rallied from six runs down to beat the Reston Rockets 10-8 on Friday, putting the defending champions on the verge of elimination from the Manitoba Senior Baseball League playoffs.
Trailing 8-2 at one point of the game in Reston, the Cloverleafs battled back to tie the score 8-8 after eight innings and scored twice in the top of the ninth to take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five semifinal.
Ryan Johnson pitched 5 1/3 scoreless innings of one-hit relief to earn the win for the Cloverleafs, walking four batters, hitting one and striking out eight. Brandon starter Justin Funk worked just 2 2/3 innings, giving up eight earned runs on nine hits.
Reston reliever Zane Sawyer took the loss, allowing six runs — five earned — on hive hits and four walks, with two strikeouts. He also hit a batter to bring in the winning run.
Matt Gunning, Matt Mutcheson, Bryan Swaenepoel and Max Poulin all went 2-for-4 for the Cloverleafs, who can advance to the final with a win in Game 3 Sunday at 7 p.m., at Andrews Field. Gunning scored two runs, while Mutcheson drove in two.
Buddy Mayert was 2-for-4 with a double, scoring three runs and driving in one for the Rockets.
Mitch Olson was also 2-for-4 with a double and three RBIs for Reston, while Rory Tycoles went 2-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs.
» Brandon Sun
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition July 28, 2012