Clinton, IA - The LumberKings' offensive woes continued for the third consecutive game against the Beloit Snappers Saturday night at Ashford University Field. Clinton lost their third straight overall, and was shut out for the second time in three games by Beloit, 6-0. The win extended Beloit's winning streak to a season-high six games, and they received another dominant pitching performance, this time from right-hander Dylan Covey.
Beloit needed just six total runs Friday evening against Clinton in earning a doubleheader sweep with 1-0 and 5-2 wins. Saturday, they needed just one run for Covey, another bright righty on Beloit's pitching staff.
They got two runs in the first off of L'Kings lefty Eddie Campbell, who saw eight men come to the plate in the opening inning. Campbell, who had been downright stellar in three previous outings this season, walked Herschel Powell to lead off the frame, the first of five walks issued by the Virginia Tech graduate. After getting Melvin Mercedes on a lineout to center, four straight batters reached. Tyler Marincov singled, B.A. Vollmuth loaded the bases after reaching on Joe DeCarlo's ninth error of the season, and Jaycob Brugman brought home Powell with a run-scoring single. The next batter, Ryan Huck, then popped what appeared to be a routine out to shallow right field, but second baseman Martin Peguero overran the ball, allowing another run to score.
Up 2-0, Beloit and Covey went into cruise control. The Athletics' 2013 4th round pick induced a double play in the first after Clinton loaded the bases with one out, and escaped in the third and fourth as well, stranding two runners both times.
Meanwhile, Campbell's struggle on the mound continued. The 22-year-old walked Vollmuth beginning the third, and Brugman launched his second homer to the Lumber Lounge area in right, pushing Beloit's lead to four, 4-0.
The Snappers chased Campbell in the fourth after the former Hokie issued his fourth and fifth walks. Rafael Pineda came on in relief and promptly gave up a two-run double to Brugman who entered the game with eight RBIs, and finished with a career-high five, coming just a triple shy of the cycle in the process.
Spotted with a six-run lead, Covey (3-2) was at his best over his final three innings pitched. Covey sat down the final 11 batters he faced following a Corey Simpson single with one out in the fourth. Clinton had just two base runners over the final five innings, one via an error and the other on a walk in the ninth.
The LumberKings recorded just four singles and were limited to four hits by Beloit's staff for the third straight contest.
Clinton (21-19) lost another game in the MWL Western Division standings following wins by Kane County and Peoria. The L'Kings are six out of first place to the Cougars and 3.5 games back of Peoria for second. Of Clinton's 28 remaining games in the first half, the LumberKings play 15 times against the two division foes in front of them - nine vs. Kane County and six against Peoria.
Clinton and Beloit wrap up their four-game set tomorrow afternoon, beginning at 2:00 PM CT at Ashford University Field. Right-hander Carlos Misell (4-2, 3.86) will go for the LumberKings who look to avoid a series sweep. He'll be opposed by right-hander Bobby Wahl (0-2, 6.75). The broadcast can be heard on WCCI 100.3 FM, wcciradio.com, and lumberkings.com.