The Madison Mallards overcame a shaky pitching start with mid-game cannon shots that roasted the Green Bay Booyah in a 7-5 comeback victory Thursday night at Warner Park.
Mallards starting pitcher Eliot Turnquist said he felt early on that it was going to be a tough game.
“The way the game started...I just knew I had to grind out,” Turnquist said.
The grind began almost immediately, when Green Bay first baseman Kaden Hollow and catcher Jake Berg connected off Turnquist for two-out RBI singles in the top of the first. After Madison left fielder Alex Iadisernia sparked his team’s offense by smacking an RBI single into left field off Green Bay starter Jacob Riordan in the bottom of the inning, the Booyah grilled Turnquist harder in the third, as third baseman Max Wagner’s two-run blast into right field to pushed the lead to 4-1.
Turnquist said he adopted a new strategy after he struggled with his go-to early breaking ball.
“That’s a strength of mine. Today, I didn’t haven’t it,” Turnquist said. “Luckily, I started throwing a cutter a couple days ago, and I used it today and it was a pretty good pitch for me.”
The Mallards’ offense started cooking again in the fourth, when first baseman Tyler Dean blooped an RBI double that landed just inside the third base line. Catcher Drake Baldwin’s sacrifice fly into left field then cut the deficit to 4-3. In the fifth, Madison center fielder Cam Cratic tied things up with a booming solo shot to right, and Iadisernia’s two-run homer later that inning put the home team out in front 6-4.
Madison padded its lead with an Iadisernia RBI double in the sixth. He said that the team has been focused on making harder contact with the ball.
“We’ve just been working hard in the cage trying to hit line drives... staying to our plan,” said Iadisernia, who finished the night with four RBI.
Max Wagner provided a last offensive gasp for the Booyah with a solo homer in the top of the seventh, but the Green Bay comeback was not to be. Mallards hitting coach Ryne Stanley said that his team has begun to accept that a single player can’t do everything.
“Guys are starting to understand that if you don’t always try to be the hero, don’t always try to hit home runs, if you just try to move the baseball and get the barrel on the ball, good things happen,” Stanley said.
The Mallards look to sweep the Booyah on Friday night at Warner Park. First pitch is slated for 6:35 p.m.