T-Birds strike early but can’t hold lead, drop opener

BARRIE – Jordan Lundberg’s two-run homerun in the bottom of the sixth inning brought in the game winning run as the Barrie Baycats came from behind to defeat the Hamilton Thunderbirds, 9-4, to take the opening game in the best-of-seven first round match-up of the Intercounty Baseball League playoffs.

Dan Jagdeo and Warren Bradley each had two-run homeruns for Hamilton.

Hamilton would get on the board in the top of the first. Zack Ranta got the first hit of the game with a hard hit drive for a two out single. Jagdeo followed with his homerun to make it 2-0 after half an inning.

Barrie would get one run back in the bottom half of the inning as Ryan Spataro reached base on an error. Spataro then stole second and come around to score on an error charged to Thunderbirds’ catcher James Anderson.

The Baycats took the lead in the second inning. Sean Mattson singled to open the inning on the first pitch he faced and advanced to second when Lundberg reached base on the Thunderbirds’ third error of the game. Mattson would then score on Spataro’s two out single and Lundberg would cross the plate on an error by Bradley.

Hamilton would regain the lead in the top of the fourth as Jagdeo doubled with a full count to open the inning and scored on Bradley’s two-run homerun. However, Barrie would regain the lead in the bottom when Dave Latour walked to start the inning and scored on Jordan Lundberg’s two-run homerun. The Baycats would add two more runs in the inning off of a sacrifice fly and a fielder’s choice as well as single runs in the seventh and eighth innings.

Jordell Farquharson started the game for the Thunderbirds going five and a third innings allowing seven runs, three of which were unearned, on five hits and six walks while striking out four Baycats in taking the loss. Mike Gottschalk relieved Farquharson, going one inning allowing a run on one hit and two walks with a single strikeout. Mike Fortuna pitched the final inning and two-thirds for Hamilton allowing one run on a walk and striking out two batters.

Chris Kemlo started the game and earned the win for Barrie going six and two-thirds innings allowing four runs on seven hits and two walk while fanning five Thunderbird batters. Chris England pitched two-thirds of an inning in relief of Kemlo striking out two batters. Jamie Arneson and Scott Kelly combined to pitch the final inning and two-thirds striking out two batters.

Game two in the series will go on Thursday (July 28) at 7:30 p.m. at the Barrie Metals Stadium.