Billings and Great Falls went at it for 17 innings on Friday. And while the Rookie-level Voyagers ultimately came out on the losing end of a 3-1 game, the night wasn't all bad for their second baseman, Jake Peter.
The White Sox prospect collected six hits in eight at-bats, establishing a team record as well as a career high. And that's especially noteworthy because although the seventh-round pick from this year's Draft is only 35 games into his professional career, he'd already recorded a five-hit performance on July 20 at Idaho Falls.
"I think that might have been the only other time where I was kind of really feeling this way at the plate," Peter said. "I think we had about 15 or 16 hits as a team tonight ... I just kind of fed off other guys getting hits. It was definitely a tough game to lose, but there were some positives that came out of it."
All six of the 21-year-old's hits against the Mustangs were singles. After grounding out to first base in the first inning, he collected a single in five straight at-bats before flying out to left in the 14th. He picked up one last base hit in the 16th, shortly before the longest game in the club's Voyager era (2008-present) was decided.
"I was just trying to hit fastballs early in the count," Peter said. "I had been struggling here in the last few games, so I just tried to stay positive and tried to keep the same approach. I got some good pitches to hit tonight and I was able to take advantage of it."
Since making his debut on June 18, the Creighton University product has compiled a .375/.436/.535 slash line with a homer, five triples, 10 doubles and 17 RBIs. The Iowa native has drawn 13 walks and struck out 12 times.
Peter ranks fourth in the Pioneer League in batting and is tied for the lead in triples with Grand Junction's Randy Reyes.
Great Falls outhit Billings on Friday, 15-10. Neither team scored until the 15th inning, when both did. After Brian O'Grady came home with Billings' first run on an error by left fielder Mason Robbins, John Ziznewski crossed the plate with the equalizer on a two-out single by Ethan Gross, Great Falls' third straight hit.
The Mustangs grabbed the lead again in the 17th as Alberti Chavez came through with a two-run single. The Voyagers could not tie it up as they had done two innings earlier.
Ty Sterner (2-0) pitched the final two innings for the win, allowing a hit and a walk while striking out two. Great Falls' Anthony Santiago (2-2) tossed the final four frames and gave up three runs -- two earned -- on two hits and two walks with three strikeouts.
"Obviously, we battled pretty hard as a team," Peter said. "In games like this, you have to try and look at the positives. A lot of guys had hits tonight. I had a good night at the plate. And hopefully, we can keep this hitting going into tomorrow's game."