GRAND CHUTE, WI - The Kane County Cougars stayed on pace for the post-season with a 4-1 victory over the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers Wednesday night at Time Warner Cable Field. The Rattlers, back home after a seven game road trip, received a solid start from Eric Arnett, but the Cougars had enough for the win.
Kane County (61-66 overall, 33-25 second half) scored two unearned runs in the first inning. Angel Franco reached on a single to start the game. Geulin Beltre was next and he sent a grounder right back to the mound. Arnett fielded the ball cleanly, but was inaccurate with his throw to second. Instead of a double play for two outs, the Cougars had runners on first and second with no outs.
Arnett struck out the next batter. Then, Cheslor Cuthbert singled to right to get Franco home. An error on the play allowed Beltre to score for a 2-0 lead.
Arnett hit the next batter to put runners on first and second with one out. But, he struck out the next two batters and started a streak of 11 straight batters set down.
The Rattlers (62-66, 24-34) came back with a run in the bottom of the first inning. Jason Rogers doubled in a run with two outs and Wisconsin was down a run.
Wisconsin threatened to tie the game later. Nick Shaw and TJ Mittelstaedt each singled to start the sixth. But, an unsuccessful sacrifice bunt attempt and an inning ending double play kept the Rattlers off the scoreboard.
Nick Ramirez doubled to start the bottom of the seventh inning, but he was left stranded there when the inning ended.
Arnett retired the first two batters in the top of the eighth inning, but gave up a single and hit a batter to put two runners on base. That ended his night.
Dan Britt came out of the Rattlers bullpen to face Kevin David and threw a wild pitch to move each runner into scoring position. Then, David singled to left and drove in both runners for a 4-1 lead.
Arnett tossed 7-2/3 innings, allowed four runs (two earned), and struck out eight batters.
The Rattlers put two runners on with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning, but could not mount more of a rally. Nick Rogers came on in the bottom of the ninth and retired Wisconsin in order for his seventh save of the season.
Game two of the three game series is Thursday night at 7:05pm. Matt Miller (5-7, 4.64) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Rattlers. Kane County has Leondy Perez (7-11, 3.23) as their scheduled starter.
Thursday is a Thirsty Thursday which means that 22 ounce Pepsi products and 16 ounce Miller products are available for $2. Redeem a Thursday night game ticket at Slugger's, located inside Super Bowl on Northland Avenue, for a chance to win great prizes from Miller Lite.
You will want to see the Ghost Riders in action at the Thursday's game. The Ghost Riders are monkeys - dressed as cowboys - riding dogs to herd sheep. Do not miss their first ever appearance at Time Warner Cable Field! And wear your cowboy boots and cowboy hats for Country & Western Night.
If you can't make it out to the ballpark, you can tune into the broadcast on AM1280, WNAM or timberrattlers.com starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 6:45pm. Thursday's game is also
WP: Jason Adam (6-8)
LP: Eric Arnett (0-3)
SAVE: Nick Rogers (7)
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.