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Rattlers win 7-4 to sweep three game set from Cougars

McMahan homers and drives in three
May 21, 2012
GRAND CHUTE, WI - The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers did something on Monday afternoon that they had never done at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium. The Rattlers beat the Kane County Cougars 7-4 to complete their first ever home series sweep of the Cougars. Ben McMahan led the way with a homer and three RBI.

Wisconsin (28-17) started the game with three runs in the bottom of the first. Max Walla reached on an error with one out. Jason Rogers followed with an RBI triple. Nick Ramirez got Rogers home with a double. Later in the inning, McMahan drove in his first run with a sacrifice fly.

Rattlers starting pitcher Will West made his Midwest League debut on Monday afternoon. He worked a scoreless first, but allowed a run in the second and an unearned run in the third to let the Cougars (23-22) get to within a run.

Rogers and McMahan responded in the bottom of the third. Rogers doubled to start the inning. McMahan drove in Rogers with a two-out single to pad the Rattlers lead to a pair of runs.

West looked like he would work clean through the fifth inning. But, a string of three straight two-out singles - with Daniel Mateo coming up with the final one - let Kane County get a run to cut Wisconsin's lead back to one.

Rafael Neda drew a leadoff walk in the bottom of the seventh inning and was at second base with two outs. Walla drove in Neda with a single for a 5-3 lead.

McMahan provided a little more insurance with a long leadoff home run to left in the eighth inning. Brandon tacked on a run with an RBI single later in the eighth and the Rattlers had a 7-3 lead.

West worked a total of five innings, walked one, and struck out three before turning over the game to Jacob Barnes. Barnes pitched three scoreless innings and allowed just one hit with three strikeouts.

The Cougars would score a run off Stephen Peterson in the ninth on a sacrifice fly by Edul Escobar, but they would get no closer.

Kane County has been coming to Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium since the ballpark opened for the 1995 season. But, this three game sweep marked the first time the Rattlers had swept any home series from the Cougars. The last time Wisconsin won every game in a series against Kane County was a four game set in Geneva, Illinois from May 23-26, 2005.

The 2005 season also marks the last time Wisconsin was eleven games over the .500. The Rattlers reached eleven over .500 with their win on Monday.

The Timber Rattlers are off on Tuesday. The team returns to action on Wednesday night to begin a 13-game road trip. The Rattlers road odyssey begins at Quad Cities against the defending Midwest League champion River Bandits. Wisconsin will send Matt Miller (2-4, 4.50) to the hill as their scheduled starting pitcher. Quad Cities counters with lefty Kyle Hald (0-2, 3.86). Game time is 7:00pm. Tune in for the action on AM1280, WNAM or starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 6:40pm.

WP: Will West (1-0)
LP: Aaron Brooks (3-5)

TIME: 2:48
ATTN: 4,778