Missoula, MT. It was a slow start offensively for the Missoula PaddleHeads in Game 1 of a 6 Game Set opposite the Billings Mustangs on Wednesday night at Allegiance Field at Ogren Park. Missoula would score only once over the first four innings and would trail 2-1 going into the
Missoula, MT. It was a slow start offensively for the Missoula PaddleHeads in Game 1 of a 6 Game Set opposite the Billings Mustangs on Wednesday night at Allegiance Field at Ogren Park. Missoula would score only once over the first four innings and would trail 2-1 going into the bottom of the fifth inning. That is when the tides would begin to turn. Missoula would score three runs in the frame to take their first lead and would never look back from that point in a 12-2 victory.
The ‘Peanut Inning’ has become a fan favorite in Missoula over recent years and has been a highlight for the PaddleHeads in recent games. That trend would continue Wednesday as the PaddleHeads would bring home four runs to make the score 8-2. Skylar Black would bring home a pair of runs in the inning on a double and would later score on a triple from Aaron Bond. That swing from the Indiana native would only begin to tell the story for Bond who would have a night to remember at the plate.
Bond would send a towering blast over the right field wall in the seventh to punctuate a 5-for-5 night at the dish. In the process, Bond would also hit for the cycle joining Zach Almond as the only other member of the PaddleHeads to do so this season.
Almond would get in on the act in the seventh inning as well clobbering a ball over the centerfield wall for his eleventh long ball of the season. The North Carolina native finished the game 4-for-5 with 4 runs scored and 3 driven-in.
On the mound, Domingo Pena was solid in the win for the PaddleHeads in five innings of work. The former Royals farmhand would allow two runs over those innings while striking out six to earn his fifth win of the season. The trio of Palmer Wenzel, Jason Seever, and Dazon Cole would also impress down the stretch as the group would allow no runs and two hits combined in four innings of work.
After the dust cleared on Wednesday night, Missoula (33-13) emerged with a one game lead in the Northern Division as the Idaho Falls Chukars (32-14) fell to the Ogden Raptors (29-17). Missoula now holds its own destiny entering the final two games of the first half. If the PaddleHeads win their next two, they will claim the first half pennant in the Pioneer League. In the process, they would clinch a playoff birth at the end of the season.
Missoula will look to take one step closer to the first half pennant Thursday in Game 2 of the series opposite the Mustangs (18-28). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. The game will be simulcast live on ESPN Missoula 102.9 F.M and SWX Montana.
With the PaddleHeads season now underway, our ‘Adopt A PaddleHead’ host family program is still in need of families that would potentially be in interested in housing a player or coach for the 2021 season. Families are encouraged to contact the front office at (406) 543- 3300 with any questions. To apply for our host family program please email [email protected].
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