O’FALLON, MO. (WFIE) - Despite scoring a total of four runs in the seventh and eighth innings, the Evansville Otters could not muster enough runs in their comeback bid against the River City Rascals Saturday, losing by a score of 6-4.
Offensively, the Rascals’ attack was spread out in a concise manner throughout the game.
Zach Lavy recorded an RBI groundout to first base to give the Rascals a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second.
In the bottom of the third, Otters starter Anthony Arias issued a bases-loaded walk to Braxton Martinez to extend the Rascals lead to two.
A sac fly from Nolan Meadows gave the Rascals a 3-0 lead after three.
Arias handed the ball to the bullpen in the bottom of the fourth following a hits batsman.
The left-hander, who made his first start since his college career, earned the loss allowing three runs on one hit in three innings pitched.
Chris Cepeda came in and allowed one hit, getting the Otters out of the fourth inning.
The Rascals tacked on two runs in the next two innings as Lavy hit a sac fly in the fifth, and Braxton Martinez did the same in the sixth, extending the Rascals lead to five.
Rascals starter Travis McQueen was strong on the mound through six innings, shutting out the Otters and allowing three hits, but the Otters got to him in the seventh inning.
Carlos Castro extended his hitting streak to 14 games after hitting a two-run home run in the seventh off McQueen, giving the Otters life cutting the deficit down to three at 5-2.
McQueen trotted out to the mound in the eighth inning but issued a walk to Hunter Cullen, and he was pulled following the walk.
Yeison Medina came on in relief and allowed a double to J.J. Gould to start his outing, putting runners on second and third with no outs for the Otters.
Medina allowed back-to-back RBI groundouts to David Cronin and Keith Grieshaber to make the score 6-4 after eight.
One of those two runs was credited to McQueen, who finished with seven innings, allowing three runs on six hits with one walk and six strikeouts.
The Otters had a leadoff base runner to start the top of the ninth as Jack Meggs reached on an error by Rascals shortstop Andrew Penner, but Jason Zgardowski retired the next three batters he faced, including a long flyout by Hunter Cullen to right field, a foot shy of a game-tying home run.
Zgardowski earned the save, his fourth in 13 games appeared.
Sunday’s rubber match will be at 5:05 p.m. from CarShield Field in O’Fallon, Mo.
Broadcast coverage can be found on 91.5 WUEV-FM and evansvilleotters.comwith Dave Nguyen on the call.
The Otters are celebrating their 25th anniversary season in 2019.
To purchase a season ticket or group outing package, call (812) 435-8686 or visit the Bosse Field front office at 23 Don Mattingly Way, Evansville, Ind. The front office is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The Evansville Otters are the 2006 and 2016 Frontier League champions.
The Otters play all home games at historic Bosse Field, located at 23 Don Mattingly Way in Evansville, Ind. Stay up-to-date with the Evansville Otters by visiting evansvilleotters.com, or follow the Otters on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.