Home run derby night was a fitting name for the Owlz game on Friday thanks to the two home runs that gave them the “W” over the Helena Brewers.
It was a slow beginning at the Brent Brown ballpark last week as the Owlz met the Brewers in the first game of a three-game set. It was pop flies and outs until the fourth inning, when Luis Jimenez pounded the first one over the fence and put some runs on the board. Jimenez was also put into the double digits with his 10th home run of the season.
The excitement came in the seventh inning. The Brewers stepped into the game when leftfielder Chris Dennis gave them their run with a triple. The Owlz took a scowling 1-4 trail as they went into the bottom of the seventh.
It was Tyson Auer who stepped up to the plate and tied the game with one swing after a booming three-run shot cleared the centerfield wall and brought the Owlz back into the game.
“The thing is … two bats before, he hit a ball to deep right center,” said manager Tom Kotchman. “He has been a really pleasant surprise for a kid who wasn’t drafted!”
The game went into the 10th inning and the Owlz took the game after Brewer pitcher Daniel Meadows intentionally walked Roberto Lopez to load the bases with only one out — giving the Owlz a very good chance at the win.
“I wouldn’t pitch to him either,” said Kotchman.
Jimenez then grounded a ball infield, but a missed catch at first prevented the double play for the Brewers, and the Owlz came out victorious 5-4.
The Owlz middle infield struggled a little towards the middle of play, which is normally a strong point for the team. They went through three pitchers throughout the night.
“Miller was excellent. … He did his normal job out there.” He only allowed one earned run during the entire game. Scholl was put in late in the game to replace Miller.
“Scholl came in and stranded an inherited runner, and we got a win out of it.”