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Clinton Takes Playoff Opener

September 4, 2019 - Midwest League (MWL) - Kane County Cougars News Release

CLINTON, Ill. - The Clinton LumberKings (1-0, 78-61) put at least one runner on every inning against the Kane County Cougars (0-1, 81-58) pitching staff in their 7-3 playoff opening win Wednesday night at Nelson Corp Field. The Cougars are on the brink of elimination and need to win out in the final two games of the series to keep their season alive.

Neither team scored through the first four innings of the ballgame, but the lack of offense came in very different ways. Clinton stranded two runners in each of the first four frames, while the Cougars had one scoring threat with the bases loaded in the third. Despite walking five, Cougar starter Levi Kelly battled for three innings issuing no runs.

Clinton first struck in the bottom of the fifth when Bubba Hollins belted a three-run homer off of reliever Andy Toelken with two outs. It was a short-lived three-run lead, because Cougar outfielders Tra Holmes and Dominic Fletcher each singled to bring the tying run up to the plate. Zack Shannon finished the regular season with a team-leading 12 home runs and worked an eight-pitch at bat against Clinton starter Remey Reed before blasting a game-tying homer over the left center field fence.

Just as the Cougars felt the tide turning their way, Clinton rallied again. This time with Chester Pimentel (0-1) on the mound. Samuel Castro singled and, after two outs, Peyton Burdick walked to continue the inning. Then Kameron Misner launched another three-run homer to put Clinton ahead for good.

Thomas Jones tacked on one more run for Clinton to put the LumberKings ahead 7-3. The Cougars didn't record a hit after Shannon's homer.

Game 2 is a must win for the Cougars and they'll send out right-hander Matt Tabor (5-4, 2.93) to the mound against Clinton's Jake Walters (7-4, 2.35). First pitch from Northwestern Medicine Field is at 6:30. It's the final Thirsty Thursday of 2019 with $1 beers, hot dogs and sodas. For tickets call 630-232-8811 or visit kccougars.com.


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