Bowling Green, KY – Matt Rice recorded his first professional four-hit game, but the Bowling Green Hot Rods (33-22, 71-54) dropped a 6-5 decision to the South Bend Silver Hawks (28-26, 63-61) on Sunday afternoon at Bowling Green Ballpark. Rice, a former catcher at Western Kentucky University, was a home run short of the cycle, and Drew Vettleson and Jake Hager both homered in the loss, the team’s third straight one-run home defeat to the Silver Hawks.
Roidany Aguila’s solo home run in the top of the eighth inning off of Hot Rods reliever Jake Partridge was the difference in the game, which featured an exciting Hot Rods comeback for the second straight night. The Hot Rods have struck 31 hits over the past two games, losing both contests by one-run.
Falling behind 4-0 and 5-2 early on, all of the Hot Rods offense occurred in the first four innings of Sunday’s contest. A Vettleson double set up an RBI-single from Jeff Malm in the bottom of the first inning. Then in the bottom of the second, Rice began the inning with a triple into the gap in left-centerfield. The next at bat featured an RBI-single from Josh Sale.
Both teams traded solo home runs from Matt Helm and Hager in the third inning, but it was Vettleson who tied the game in the bottom of the fourth inning with a two-out, two-run home run. Vettleson recorded three more hits on Sunday and is currently 7-10 with two home runs, two doubles, and six RBI’s in the four-game series.
The two teams did not score again until Aguila’s home run in the top of the eighth inning. Bowling Green brought runners to first and second base in the bottom of the ninth inning, but Kes Carter grounded out to second base to end the game.
The two squads continue their four-game series on Monday night at 6:35 PM at Bowling Green Ballpark. The Hot Rods will send RHP Trevor Shull (5-6, 4.97) to the mound, while the Silver Hawks will counter with RHP Archie Bradley (10-5, 3.80).