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Mudcats Split Tight Doubleheader at Warren County, Winning Game Two

The Chillicothe Mudcats split their final scheduled doubleheader of the season, losing game one, but winning game two against the Warren County Cropdusters on the road Saturday night. The Cropdusters won game one in extra innings, with the score finishing 3-2 in Warren County’s favor in eight innings. The Mudcats won game two by a final score of 5-3, with both games being played on the campus of Simpson College in Indianola, IA.


Chillicothe moves to 12-18 in the MINK League after the doubleheader, and 14-18 overall. The Mudcats ultimately finish 2-2 on their four game road-trip spanning over the last four days.


The doubleheader split means the Mudcats are now 4-2 against the Cropdusters in six meetings so far against Warren County this year. It also means that they have won five of their last seven games in all competitions. For Chillicothe, they maintain a 2.5 game lead on Warren County for the sixth and final spot in the MINK League playoffs, while also remaining tied with Carroll for fifth place in the MINK League Standings. Here’s a description of what happened in both games on Saturday.


Game 1: Chillicothe 2-3 Warren County (Final/8)

In Game number one, the Mudcats scored two unearned runs in the first inning, one on a John Spoto RBI single, after Warren County’s starting pitcher, James Jefferson, committed two fielding errors in the first frame. That made the game 2-0.


Chillicothe would later get out of a bases loaded jam with a double play in the third inning, but Warren County ultimately tied the game in the fourth inning on a 2-run single by Asa Rapp. Rapp got the two out hit, after back-to-back hits started the inning for the Cropdusters.


Both teams would ultimately get chances in the next three innings, but neither team could break the deadlock. Koby Linder, who was the starting pitcher for the Mudcats, completed his seventh inning of work by stranding the winning run at second base, forcing a Warren County groundout. He also sent the game into extra innings in the process, as the first game of the doubleheader was tied 2-2 after it went a full seven innings. Linder struck out five in his no-decision.


With courtesy runners allowed to both teams in the eighth inning, Chillicothe couldn’t muster a run in the top half of the inning. After the Mudcats got the first two outs in the bottom half, Warren County set up an opportunity to win the game, with runners at second and third base.  Asa Rapp came back to the plate, hit a two strike, two out single to left field to score the winning run, and walk the game off.


Game 2: Chillicothe 5-3 Warren County

The Mudcats would respond by jumping in front in game number two, scoring three runs, two unearned, in the top of the first. Two of the Mudcats runs in the frame came in on consecutive RBI singles by Hunter Shoulta and Sammy Cruz.


An RBI single by Julio Guerrero in the second inning made it 4-0, but Warren County scored in the bottom half of the frame, making it 4-1. John Spoto stretched the lead back out to four in the top of the fourth with another RBI base hit, one of ten hits for the Mudcats in game two of the doubleheader, which made the score 5-1.


The Mudcats would give up two unearned runs on a throwing error with the bases loaded in the bottom of the fourth but Chillicothe’s pitching staff battled down the stretch, and cut down any chances for a Cropduster comeback. Chillicothe starting pitcher Jayden Cabezudo pitched 4.2 innings, picking up his second consecutive win over Warren County in the process. He struck out eight batters, the second-most strikeouts for a Mudcats’ pitcher in a start this season.


Out of the bullpen, Brennan Kettle dealt 1.1 innings in relief after pitching for a second straight night, and Justin Schnell shut the door with his work in the seventh inning. After a leadoff runner reached for the Cropdusters, and Schnell hit the next batter with a pitch, the freshman from Milwaukee Area Tech struck out the next three batters in a row, leaving the tying run at second base.


The Mudcats also had some impressive hitting performances in game two of the doubleheader. Sammy cruz, Hunter Shoulta, and John Spoto all finished with two hits each, while Nathan Cupp provided his first three hit game of the year, going 3-4 with a double. Every single Mudcats batter reached at least once, and five different Mudcats combined to score the five runs.


Next Game: Chillicothe will return back to Shaffer Park and face off against Jefferson City at home on Sunday night. That means that the first pitch is early, with a 5:05 start time at Shaffer Park. Be sure to listen to all the action in the next game and the rest of the Miudcats season on KCHI and on