GOt thE SpLit

Gold­eyes head home with a win in Wi­chita as Fish catch fire in the fifth in­ning

Winnipeg Sun - - SPORTS - PAUL FRIESEN GOLD­EYES WINGNUTS pfriesen@post­media.com @friesen­sun­media

WI­CHITA, Kan. — A day af­ter losing a se­ries-open­ing slugfest, the Win­nipeg Gold­eyes proved they can do some pitching, too.

Hold­ing the Amer­i­can As­so­ci­a­tion’s high­est-scor­ing team in check, the Gold­eyes de­feated the Wi­chita Wingnuts, 7-1, Thurs­day, evening the best-of-five league fi­nal at a game apiece.

The se­ries switches to Win­nipeg for the du­ra­tion, as the Gold­eyes chase a sec­ond straight ti­tle, which hasn’t been done in the AA in 11 years.

A five-run fifth in­ning and two home runs from Reg­gie Aber­crom­bie, plus one from Casey Tur­geon, high­lighted the Fish at­tack, but pitching was the story.

Ed­win Carl, who used to work out of the bullpen, shook off a chal­leng­ing start to go six in­nings and pick up his first win as a post-sea­son starter.

“I was think­ing com­ing into this game it’s go­ing to be another high-scor­ing af­fair,” Win­nipeg man­ager Rick For­ney said. “The wind’s blow­ing out, same con­di­tions. It took us a while to get go­ing of­fen­sively. Tip your cap to Ed­win... he just kept mak­ing pitches.

“He bent a lit­tle bit, but didn’t break.”

Carl threw 56 pitches through two in­nings but al­lowed just one early run be­fore set­tling down nicely, giv­ing up six hits and strik­ing out six.

“It’s huge,” Carl said of the win. “Ev­ery­body was kind of shocked af­ter (Wed­nes­day’s) game. I mean, Charle (Rosario) is a phe­nom­e­nal pitcher, and for them to sneak that one out from us, we def­i­nitely wanted to come back and get a big win head­ing home.

“Ev­ery­one was locked in and con­fi­dent we’d get that done.”

Carl was helped by an er­ror-free de­fence, three dou­ble plays squelch­ing po­ten­tial trou­ble. For­ney called it one of his team’s bet­ter over­all games in some time.

“Bullpen did a fan­tas­tic job,” he said. “We played great de­fence, we ran the bases — just a nice bounce-back ef­fort.”

For­ney was able to use his bullpen ex­actly the way he likes to, in­sert­ing Mitchell Lamb­son to work a score­less sev­enth, Vic­tor Capel­lan an equally ef­fi­cient eighth and closer Ryan Chaf­fee the ninth.

The Gold­eyes spot­ted Wi­chita a 1-0 lead in the sec­ond in­ning, be­fore ex­plod­ing in typ­i­cal Fish fash­ion in the fifth.

Short­stop and No. 9 hit­ter An­drew Sohn got things go­ing by knock­ing in lead­off hit­ter Wes Darvill with a dou­ble.

Sec­ond base­man Tur­geon fol­lowed up with his first home run in 23 games as a Gold­eye.

“I got a good pitch over the mid­dle of the plate,” Tur­geon said. “That one I got a lit­tle ex­tra. You’re kind of on the ropes there, tied 1-1. And then Reg came up a cou­ple hit­ters af­ter me and kind of sealed the deal there.”

Af­ter a Josh Ro­man­ski sin­gle, Aber­crom­bie, show­ing no ill ef­fects from a col­li­sion with the out­field wall a night ear­lier, belted a pitch over the same wall in straight cen­tre, and it was 5-1.

When Shawn Pl­effner, who’d been 0-for-6 in the se­ries, sin­gled, that marked the end of Wi­chita starter Alex Bosh­ers, who’d been solid to that point.

In the big in­ning, Win­nipeg sent nine men to the plate, post­ing six hits.

“We’ve got a lineup that pitch­ers ob­vi­ously don’t want to face,” Tur­geon said. “If the top of the lineup doesn’t get the job done... the other half will pick us up.”

The Gold­eyes weren’t much kin­der to Wingnuts re­liever Tyler Kane, ex­tend­ing their lead to 6-1 on a Ma­son Katz walk, another Sohn dou­ble and a Tur­geon walk, chas­ing the sec­ond Wi­chita pitcher.

Thrower No. 3, Seth Har­vey, got David Rohm to hit into a dou­ble play, nip­ping trou­ble in the bud, but the dam­age had been done.

Gold­eyes reg­u­lar-sea­son ace Kevin McGovern (13-3) will start Game 3, sched­uled for Satur­day night, hop­ing for a bet­ter start than his pre­vi­ous two play­off starts, from which he was chased, early.

“We have a long drive ahead of us,” Tur­geon said of the 16-hour bus trip back to Man­i­toba. “Go­ing onto the road with a win, ev­ery­one will be happy.”

Game 4 is set for Sun­day, weather per­mit­ting, with a fifth game on Mon­day.

ED BAILEY PHOTO

Casey Tur­geon con­nects for his first homer as a Gold­eye in the fifth in­ning in Wi­chita last night.

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