Game of the Week: Chugiak rallies from big hole, wins 7-6

Posted by Van Williams, ALB Media Director | Jul 1, 2020

Down but not out, the Chugiak Mustangs tonight battled back from a five-run deficit to defeat the West Eagles 7-6 in the Alliance Baseball League Game of the Week live online broadcast at Mulcahy Stadium.

 

Zach Cole pitched four shutout innings of relief to keep Chugiak in the game and Justin Nevells capped the comeback by scoring the winning run in the bottom of the eighth inning.

 

Frizelle led off the eighth inning with a single and then stole second base. Austin Bull walked and Camden Costanios reached on an infield single to load the bases.

 

Connor Lanehart bounced the ball to second, but the West defender's throw home sailed off the mark to allow Frizelle to score.

 

Cole earned the win and player-of-the-game honors, a much-deserved nod of respect after coming in with his team down 6-1. He allowed only two hits and one walk while striking out four.

 

Much of the night was dominated by West all-star Leland Wilson, who showed off his two-way skills in the box and on the bump.

 

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The left-handed ace struck out nine batters in five innings of work, working around a hiccup in the fourth inning when he issued four walks and uncorked four wild pitches.

 

That was the first earned run he's allowed in 11.2 innings this season.

 

Wilson also reached base in each of his first three plate appearances with an RBI double in the second inning, a single and run scored in the third inning and a bases-loaded walk in the fourth inning.

 

Wilson's second RBI made it 6-1 - and it could have been worse for Chugiak had first baseman Bull not picked a throw in the turf for the final out of the fourth inning.

 

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Still, Chugiak looked cooked.

 

In the sixth inning, the Mustangs capitalized on three straight hit batsmen - all on off-speed pitches - and a West throwing error to plate four runs and cut the deficit to 6-5.

 

Lanehart led off the seventh inning with a single and later scored on Hunter Rau's towering sac fly to left field to tie the game at 6-6.

 

The eighth inning was wild.

 

West's Bubba Mendoza (who was 2-for-2 off the bench) led off with an infield single and stole second base. He was moved to third base on a two-strike sac bunt by Max Fink.

 

But credit Cole, who retired two hot hitters in Shawn Jones and Jack Opinsky, getting another scoop by Bull at first base to keep the score tied and set up a walkoff win in the bottom half of the eighth inning.

 

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