07/01/2019 10:55 PM -
Whiting, Ind. – July 1, 2019 – Perhaps the least favorable inning of the day for the Northwest Indiana Oilmen offense was the only one in which they scored a run on Monday.
The Oilmen pushed across a single tally to take a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second, but couldn’t add on despite having the bases loaded with nobody out in a game Southland eventually won 5-1 at Oil City Stadium.
“We’ve got to put the ball in play in those spots,” Oilmen manager Kevin Tyrrell said. “With the bases loaded and no outs, we didn’t get the ball out of the infield, and that’s disappointing. Our lineup is better than that, but they weren’t today unfortunately. We’ve got some things to work on, but that Southland team doesn’t let you get away with things like that because they play really good baseball in all facets. It was tough to recover from that. Even though we had more chances, the second inning was a big one where we could have blown it open early and made them come from behind.”
The 1-0 Oilmen edge stood until the fifth, when one swing of the bat by Logan Anderson rearranged the scoreboard. His long two-run homer over the high brick wall in left put Southland ahead 2-1, a lead they would never relinquish. Colin Walton (Robert Morris / Midlothian, Ill.) allowed two runs on four hits and one walk in five solid innings to take a tough-luck loss, his first decision of the season.
“If we had a larger lead early, I would probably have had a longer leash with Walton, even though that’s the most he’s pitched in a long time,” Tyrrell said. “He did a great job throwing the ball over the plate and making them swing the bat. He wasn’t afraid of barrels. The only time he got into trouble was when he walked the leadoff man.”
Michael Bolton (Purdue / Calumet City, Ill.), Ben Berenda (IU Southeast / Rensselaer, Ind.) and Tommy Farrell (UIC / Chicago, Ill.) had two hits apiece for the Oilmen (10-11), but the Vikings (13-5) tacked on three in the eighth to pull away for the win. The lone Oilmen run of the evening came on an RBI single by Farrell in the aforementioned second.
Northwest Indiana has displayed promise throughout the season, but the team has yet to put together a winning streak to pull away from the .500 line.
“We’ve got to get that timely hit,” Tyrrell said. “We had a chance to get into a rhythm on Sunday and it got rained out. I liked the way we swung the bats at the beginning of the game against Joliet, but we didn’t get a chance to complete those games. Southland threw another tough lefty who was at the bottom of the zone and made us hit his pitch, and it didn’t go well for us. Hopefully we get a little bit of confidence here and string together some games without being disrupted by rainouts.”
The Oilmen will be back in action on Tuesday night as Bloomington comes to town for a 7:10 p.m. first pitch. It’s a “Two for Tuesday” at Oil City Stadium with all tickets available for the discounted price of $2. For those who can’t make it out to the game, Brandon Vickrey and Blake Toman will have the call on the Oilmen Broadcasting Network, which is available via Facebook Live.