Story by: Jay Sanchez
Alec Barnhart slams the team’s first home run of the season, but it wasn’t enough as the Admirals’ three-game winning streak was snapped in Friday’s 6-2 defeat against the DuPage Hounds.
Barnhart said his sixth inning shot off of Hounds starter Matt Frawley, a Division I pitcher out of Purdue University, “feels good,” but he was upset over the outcome of their road debut that puts them at 3-4 on the season.
“We just didn’t bring our ‘A’ game today,” said Barnhart, out of St. Xavier University. “It felt like we basically just gave them the game.”
Most of the players expressed the same sentiment about the result. In Thursday’s game against Lexington, pitching, hitting and defense equally contributed to their win, however, Friday was the opposite. Two errors led to three unearned runs, Admirals’ hitters struck out 12 times, and the pitchers issued nine walks.
“Pitchers need to give us a better chance, and hitters need to come through in timely hitting,” said Admirals manager Jorge Garza. “We didn’t have that at all today.”
With their next game the following week, Garza didn’t mind chewing into the bullpen early in case starting pitcher Tomas Aguilar struggled. He went three innings, allowed two runs (one unearned), gave up three walks and struck out one batter.
In order, Eric Littler, Brock Borgeson, Ryan Van Volkenburg and Steve Waldrop appeared in relief after Aguilar’s departure. The starting pitcher said he would have liked to stay out longer but felt his performance was better than his first start which he could build off of as he looks to improve on “getting early in the count” against hitters.
Barnhart scored all the Admirals’ runs. Aside his home run, he also scored in the fourth inning from a single by Chip Bouchard. Jermaine Terry ended his five-game hitting streak, going 0 for 4, but maintains a batting average of .393 on the year. Logan Fleener continues his hot start at the plate by going 2 for 3 and raising his batting average to .500 through four starts.
The Admirals defeat halts their momentum going into their off week. Despite the loss, Borgeson, who pitched 1 1/3 innings in relief, remains optimistic for the season, especially after experiencing a win streak and said that although it’s a loss, it came at an “okay time.”
“I think it’s nice winning those three games for sure,” Borgeson said. “I think the perspective of the guys totally changed, and even with this one loss, I think it came at an okay time. Take a little break, forget about it, kind of reunite. 3-4, you could work with that.”
The Admirals will take a few needed days off after playing seven games the past nine days. They’ll have a few practices before traveling to Whiting, Ind. June 13 to face the Northwest Indiana Oilmen.