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Sunday July 16, 2017
Photo cred: Amanda Fewer
Story by: Dustin Saracini
Medicine Hat, AB - For the first time since July 4, the (24-11) Okotoks Dawgs came out on the losing side of a ball game, breaking their streak of seven straight wins.
Today, it was the (19-17) Medicine Hat Mavericks out-duelling the red and white, 18-10, in a high offensive, 31-hit tilt between the two clubs.
For Okotoks, Eddie Sanchez (Central Arkansas), Matt Lloyd (Indiana University), Zach Hanna (University of Missouri) and Darius Foster (Oregon State University) led the pack with multi-hit days while Kody Funderburk (Dallas Baptist) drove in two in the loss.
In a carbon copy of the game a night ago, Okotoks rebounded after the Mavericks took an early lead. Funderburk earned himself a seven-pitch walk in his first at-bat before advancing from first to third off a Hanna base-knock to shallow right field. A pair of two-out singles off the bats of Joel Brophy (Niagara University) and Foster then made it a 2-2 ball game. The former collected his third hit in the last two nights, and wasn’t done contributing. With runners on the corners, the Dawgs used their patented double steal to take their first lead of the contest.
The red and white kept coming an inning later. Lloyd extended his hitting streak to 16 games with a single through the 3-4 gap. The Indiana product moved into scoring position after watching Cameron Campbell (University of Oregon) stroke his seventh hit in his last three games played. With two out, Hanna -- a former Iowa Western outfielder -- registered his second hit, barrelling a double down the right field line to score another Iowa Western alumni in Lloyd, handing the Dawgs a two-run edge.
Medicine Hat wouldn’t roll over in front of the home crowd, coming back to tally nine runs on three hits, two walks, and three hit-by-pitch the next inning -- taking a commanding 11-4 lead.
Okotoks started to chip away by plating three with their next opportunity at the plate -- courtesy of Lloyd -- who lined a bases loaded double down the right field line. A trio of singles from Foster, Aderly Perez (UAPB) and Sanchez set the stage, and Lloyd didn’t disappoint. Funderburk powered a sac-fly to left field to cap off the inning.
He was up to much of the same in the sixth, bringing the Dawgs within three with a sac-fly to left field. After a hit-by-pitch brought Okotoks within two, a wild pitch made it an 11-10 game -- A run away from completing the seven-run comeback.
Unfortunately, it would fall short, as Medicine Hat erased the work of the Dawgs with three blasts, en route to their first win in four tries.
The Dawgs have a day off before beginning their Saskatchewan road trip, July 18, against the Yorkton Cardinals.
BY THE NUMBERS:
Eddie Sanchez: 2-6, 2 R, .351 AVG
Matt Lloyd: 2-3, 2 R, 2 RBI, .411 AVG
Zach Hanna (R) : 3-4, R, RBI, .318 AVG
WP: Will Zeibol (1-0) LP: Chris Horvath (3-2)