NLA Spiel 7, May 23, 04

Frogs 0001103584
Challengers 100052x892
W: Bregy, H. L: SKlee

Challengers rally late to win 8-5

The Challengers needed four innings to warm up, but then kicked into gear to score seven runs in the final two innings, winning Game 1 of Sunday's doubleheader 8-5 against the Sissach Frogs.

<a href="" title="Spielprofil ansehen für Patrick Zöllig">Patrick Zöllig</a> reached base all four times he stepped to the plate.
Patrick Zöllig reached base each time he stepped to the plate.
No team dominated in the first four innings, and the two played to a 1-1 tie.

The Challengers scored in the first inning on Tobias Siegrist's RBI-double off starter Steve Klee, but did little after that.

Starter Harry Bregy, on the other hand, controlled the Frogs' batters, allowing the only run in the fourth inning on an error by first baseman Adrian Kämpfer.

It looked as if the game would go down to the wire.

The Frogs took the lead in the fifth inning on playing coach Abe Balsamo's ground-rule RBI-double that cleared the right field fences.

With two outs, the Frogs killed their rally by themselves as Daniel Traina was caught stealing second in a first-and-third situation without scoring a run.

But then the Challengers responded with five runs in the bottom half of the inning, blowing the game wide open.

<a href="" title="Spielprofil ansehen für Nick Lehmann">Nick Lehmann</a> now has the most hit-by-pitches in Challengers
Nick Lehmann now has the most hit-by-pitches in Challengers' history with 24.
They combined for five hits and one walk before Klee even managed to record an out.

RBI-singles by Bregy and Kämpfer, a two-run single by Chris Hardy, plus a run-scoring error by first baseman Ivano Piaia cost the Frogs the game that inning.

The Challengers wasted the opportunity to add to their score as Anubis Benitez and Chris Palatinus both struck out with the bases loaded and Roger Brunner grounded out to short right field to end the assault.

The Frogs couldn't regroup, and fell back even further as two sac flies by Kämpfer and Nick Lehmann pushed the score to 8-2.

Both those runs were unearned as the Frogs' defense committed its third and fourth errors of the game.

Going into the seventh and final inning, the Challengers felt confident winning the game.

But the Frogs had one more offensive threat left.

The first two batters reached safely, and Balsamo plated one of them with his RBI-double.

With two outs, Christoph Klarer followed with a two-run single, and the Challengers' lead had shrunken to just three runs.

But Bregy got Claudio Heim to hit into a game-ending fielder's choice.

With that win, the Challengers earned a spot in the Qualification Round of the five best teams.

Game notes
Lehmann was hit by a pitch in the second inning, taking over the lead on the alltime list for hit-by-pitches with 24. ...Patrick Zöllig reached on an error in his 250th NLA at-bat in the 5th inning. ...Siegrist scored his 150th run in the NLA in the 6th inning. ...Palatinus tied Jose Valdez for third place on the alltime list for hits with 269 by doubling in the 5th inning. ...With his single in the 5th inning, Brunner has tied Adris Linares for 8th place on the alltime list for Total Bases with 335.