Lake County (41-49 overall, 10-11 second half) took the lead with a first inning run. Rattlers starting pitcher Matt Miller issued a four-pitch walk with two outs to Luigi Rodriguez. Rodriguez would get into scoring position by stealing second base. Smith singled to left to score Rodriguez for a 1-0 lead.
Tyler Roberts tied the game in the top of the fifth inning. The Timber Rattlers designated hitter lined a 1-0 pitch from Mason Radeke to the bleachers in left field for his fourth home run of the season. The solo shot tied the game 1-1.
But, the tie did not last long. Patric Tolentino hit a leadoff homer in the bottom of the fifth inning to push Lake County back in front. An error, a stolen base, and a two-out RBI double by Francisco Lindor gave the Captains another run for a 3-1 lead.
The Captains plated two more runs with two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning. Back-to-back RBI doubles by Tolentino and Todd Hankins put the Captains up 5-1.
The Rattlers (55-35, 11-10) pulled closer with single runs in the seventh and eighth innings. Yadiel Rivera drew a leadoff walk and went from first to third on a wild pitch in the seventh inning. He scored on a second wild pitch in the inning. Walla lined a home run to left to start the Rattlers eighth inning and Lake County's lead was down to a pair of runs.
In the ninth, Rivera walked and Roberts doubled to start the inning and put runners on second and third with no outs. Lance Roenicke entered the game as a pinch runner for Roberts. Adrian Williams grounded out to first to get Rivera home. But, Roenicke was still at third with the tying run with two outs in the inning.
Walla got Roenicke home with a two-out single to left to tie the game 5-5.
The score was still tied with one out in the top of the twelfth inning. Walla stepped into the batter's box and step up again. He lined another opposite field home run to left to put the Rattlers in front 6-5. It was the first lead of the night for the Rattlers.
But, the Captains took advantage of a defensive miscue in the bottom of the twelfth to tie the game. Francisco Lindor reached on an error to start the inning. A sacrifice bunt moved him into scoring position. Smith would line a 2-0 pitch to center to send Lindor home with the tying run.
Lake County had the winning run in scoring position in the twelfth, thirteenth, and fourteenth inning, but could not break through with the winning run.
In the fifteenth, Jose Ramirez blooped a double into center. An intentional walk was issued to Lindor. A passed ball with Luigi Rodriguez moved both runners into scoring position. So, another intentional walk was issued to load the bases and bring Smith to the plate again,
But, before Smith could bat, the Rattlers brought Walla in from right field to play first base and set up a defense with five infielders and two outfielders.
Smith would send a soft fly ball to left field. Ben McMahan, the Timber Rattlers leader in outfield assists with nine this season, made the catch and fired home, but a tad off target. Ramirez made a headfirst dive to the infield part of the plate and avoided the tag to score the winning run.
The Timber Rattlers continue their road trip when they start a three-game series with the Fort Wayne TinCaps at Parkview Field on Saturday night. Chad Pierce (3-3, 4.05) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Rattlers. Fort Wayne sends Matt Wisler (3-4, 2.42) to the hill. Game time is 6:05pm CDT. Tune in for the broadcast on AM1280, WNAM and timberrattlers.com starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 5:45pm.
Tyler Roberts (4th, 0 on in 5th inning off Mason Radeke, 1 out)
Max Walla (3rd, 0 on in 8th inning off Rob Nixon, 0 out)
Max Walla (4th, 0 on in 12th inning off Manuel Carmona, 1 out)
Patric Tolentino (2nd, 0 on in 5th inning off Matt Miller, 0 out)
WP: Kyle Petter (1-0)
LP: Stephen Peterson (2-2)