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Marauders Weather Wild Finish, Win 9-6

April 26, 2022

BRADENTON, Fla. — After building a six-run lead in the middle innings, the Marauders saw their lead dwindle in the latter part of the game but hung on to defeat the Dunedin Blue Jays, 9-6, on Tuesday night at LECOM Park. Tsung-Che Cheng led the Marauders (9-7) with four hits

BRADENTON, Fla. — After building a six-run lead in the middle innings, the Marauders saw their lead dwindle in the latter part of the game but hung on to defeat the Dunedin Blue Jays, 9-6, on Tuesday night at LECOM Park.

Tsung-Che Cheng led the Marauders (9-7) with four hits in the game, including a solo homer in the fourth. Eight of the nine men in the Bradenton lineup reached base safely in the game.

Entering the eighth inning with an 8-2 lead, the Marauders sent right-hander Xavier Concepcion to the mound. After a walk and a single, a Concepcion wild pitch allowed one run to score, and an RBI-groundout by Otto Lopez brought the Blue Jays (6-10) within four runs. Rainer Nunez followed with a two-run homer to cut the Marauders lead to 8-6 before Concepcion recovered to escape the inning with no further damage.

Cheng led off the bottom of the eighth with a bloop double along the left field line, stole third base, and scored on a wild pitch by Connor Cooke, bringing Bradenton’s lead back to three runs.

Right-hander Wilkin Ramos faced trouble on the mound in the ninth inning for the Marauders, allowing a leadoff walk and a one-out infield single. Lopez then walked to load the bases and bring the go-ahead run to the plate, but Jordan Groshans hit a soft grounder back to the mound that Ramos knocked down and threw home for a force out, and Nunez grounded out to first base, ending the game.

Nick Dombkowski (1-0) earned the win in relief for the Marauders, tossing three and one-third hitless innings and retiring ten of the eleven batters he faced, allowing just one walk while striking out six.

The two teams traded runs in the first inning, as Dasan Brown led off the game for Dunedin with a home run off Carlos Jimenez before the Marauders tied the score, 1-1, on a Jacob Gonzalez RBI-double.

Bradenton took the lead in the second inning on a Juan Jerez sacrifice fly off Matt Svanson (0-1), and Gonzalez added an RBI-single for a 3-1 lead. The Blue Jays came back within one run in the third when Amell Brazoban singled and scored on an error, but the Marauders re-extended their lead on solo home runs in the fourth by Cheng and Rodolfo Nolasco, then padded their advantage to 8-2 in the fifth inning on three hits, two walks, and a run-scoring balk by reliever Julian Valdez.

Gonzalez and Nolasco finished with three hits each for the Marauders. The three hits matched a career-high for Nolasco, while Gonzalez’s 3-for-4 night extended his on-base streak to 14 consecutive games.

The series continues Wednesday with first pitch scheduled for 12 p.m. at LECOM Park. LHP Luis Peralta (0-1, 8.59 ERA) will start for the Marauders against RHP Jonatan Bernal (0-1, 3.27 ERA) for Dunedin.

For more information about the Bradenton Marauders, please call (941) 747-3031, visit BradentonMarauders.com, or email [email protected].

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