BELOIT, WI - Dylan Covey permitted only one earned run in six innings as the Beloit Snappers defeated the Clinton LumberKings, 6-2, and completed a sweep of their first round series in the Midwest League Playoffs on Thursday night at Pohlman Field with 698 in attendance.
After taking this best of three series with the LumberKings, the Snappers move on the Western Division Final, where they will face the Quad Cities River Bandits.
Covey (1-0) silenced Clinton's bats for much of the evening. He set down the first 11 men he faced and retired the side in order in four different frames. The right hander made it through his outing without walking a batter and struck out three. Covey did give up two runs, an unearned run in the fourth and an earned run in the sixth, but his offense provided him with the run support he needed.
The early lead was seized by Beloit, as a first inning RBI single by Christopher Bostick put them in front. Three innings later, a single by Renato Nunez and a walk to Brett Vertigan opened up the inning and when Nick Rickles tried to bunt them over, pitcher Dylan Unsworth (0-1) threw the ball away for an error. Two runs scored on the play and the Snappers were up 3-1.
In the fifth, Beloit continued padding their lead. A walk and a hit batter put the first two men on for John Wooten. The right-fielder then ripped a double down the left field line, tallying both runners for a four-run advantage. An error two hitters later scored Wooten and stretched the lead to five.
In the seventh, the game was turned over to the bullpen. The first reliever to take the hill was Sam Bragg and he worked around a pair of two-out walks to toss a scoreless frame. Next up was Chris Lamb and he didn't give up a run despite also allowing a pair of baserunners. Finally, Tyler Vail took over the pitching chore in the ninth and finished off Clinton with one more shutout inning, sealing a spot for the Snappers in the Western Division Final.
The first game of the second round will be in Quad Cities on Saturday with the first pitch time and the pitching probables TBD. Games two and three (if necessary) will be played on Sunday and Monday in Beloit, both beginning at 6:30pm. All playoff games in Beloit will continue to feature specials such as $1 fountain sodas and 12 ounce drafts of beer, also for $1.