Seven run fourth puts Plymouth behind the eight ball

Jesus Luva's tag is just late to nab Kyle Kuhn at third
By: 
Rusty Nixon
Sports Editor

It was several games in one which has seemed to be the “normal” when Plymouth goes to Warsaw and the Tigers were able to slug out a 9-4 win over Plymouth that deals a blow to the Pilgrims bid for an NLC title.
Top team Goshen fell to Elkhart Memorial on Monday night with NorthWood winning and Plymouth could have kept pace pending completion of a rain delayed game joining a three way tie at the top of the NLC standings.
With the loss they stay a game and a half back of the leaders in third place.
“It was one of those nights actually I was kind of afraid of after Saturday, coming over here and them being fired up and ready to play,” said Plymouth head coach Ryan Wolfe. “Where they’re at they can be spoilers in the conference. They can go out and have fun and not worry about anything and those teams are dangerous. It’s a tough one to swallow there.”
They didn’t appear dangerous to start as Tiger starter Michael Nunez gave up a leadoff single to Benji Nixon and proceeded to walk Cole Filson and Cam Dennie before hitting Noah Pesak to bring home the first and only Plymouth run of the inning.
Whatever Warsaw coach Mike Hepler said in his mound visit he should have recorded because Nunez miraculously righted the ship and was almost unhittable before leaving with two outs in the sixth. Nixon and Pesak were the only to Pilgrims to have another hit to that point.
Plymouth starter Jacob Deacon was able to match Nunez in what looked like a developing pitchers duel until the fourth inning when the wheels came off for the Pilgrims. Six straight Warsaw hitters reached base and seven scored before Filson came on to retire the side.
Plymouth chased Nunez in the sixth with a two run single from Matt Dobuck but left two runners on and then managed to load the bases with two outs and push one across on Deacon’s single in the seventh, but once again the Pilgrims left the bases loaded.
“Looking back even the last game against Penn we had opportunities early to put a few more runs across and who knows?” said Wolfe. “You get an inning like that (Warsaw’s seven run fourth) and it’s hard to recover. Somehow, someway you have to find a way to get out of those.”
Plymouth couldn’t solve Nunez in the middle with five strikeouts in the fourth, fifth and sixth. Somehow they recovered for five hits in the final two frames but had three more strikeouts in the seventh.
“We let some other things dictate our at bats and just not forgetting about the last pitch and focusing on the next one,” said Wolfe. “We hit some balls hard and ended up having some good approaches. We left some guys on base if we could have gotten some guys across there in the sixth inning it might have made a difference but we just can’t give up seven in one inning.”
Plymouth now moves to 9-8 on the year and 6-3 in the NLC with a critical game at Goshen on Wednesday.
•WARSAW 9, PLYMOUTH 4
at Warsaw
Plymouth 1 0 0 0 0 2 1 4-10-3
Warsaw 0 1 0 7 0 1 x 9-10-0
WP - Michael Nunez. LP - Jacob Deacon. HR - Noah Burgh (W). 2B - Burgh (W), Nunez (W), Kuhn (W).

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