FARGO, N.D. – The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks (33-44) fell 7-6 in ten innings to the Sioux Falls Pheasants (36-41) on Friday night at Newman Outdoor Field in Fargo, ND.
Another fireworks night produced the fifth sellout crowd of the year for the RedHawks. The 4,763 fans in attendance were noticeably energized, especially late in the game, while cheering their team toward victory. Unfortunately, the outcome didn’t go as planned as the Pheasants rallied late and beat the RedHawks in extra frames.
The Fargo-Moorhead faithful thought their team had won the game on multiple occasions tonight. The RedHawks jumped out to a 5-3 lead in the seventh inning when Zach Penprase knocked in two runs while extending his hit streak to 13 games with a single. Then, Carlo Cota added an RBI single of his own to make it a 6-3 game in the eighth inning. Donnie Smith entered the ninth inning and a feeling of confidence was sensed throughout Newman Outdoor Field.
Sioux Falls got the fireballer to issue three walks before using a fielder’s choice and a bases clearing triple by Reggie Abercrombie to tie the game at six and force extra innings. The Pheasants continued to profit on late walks by the RedHawks pitching staff in the tenth inning. Francisco Leandro reached base on a walk, advanced to second on a wild pitch, moved to third on a passed ball, and scored on a ground ball to give the Pheasants a 7-6 lead.
The RedHawks weren’t ready to give up though. With two outs, C.J. Retherford picked up his third hit of the night and Cota followed with a walk. Both runners advanced on a balk by closer, Aaron Cotter. That brought up Kole Zimmerman. Zimmerman hit a chopper back up the middle that brought a rousing cheer throughout the crowd because it looked like the groundball was going to make it into the outfield and score two runs to win the game. Shortstop Joe Anthonson stole the show by flying across the middle of the infield and making a fantastic play to get the third and final out of the game, sealing the victory for Sioux Falls.
Dan McDaniel got the win after pitching a 1-2-3 ninth inning. Cotter picked up his 12th save of the year tied with Kris Regas as the all-time leader in saves for Sioux Falls at 46. Adam Tollefson received the loss for Fargo-Moorhead after giving up one run (unearned) in the tenth inning.
Retherford was 3-for-4 with three runs scored on the night. Cota went 2-for-4 with a two-run home run in the second inning and three runs batted in. Jack Frawley tossed 5.1 innings in his RedHawk debut giving up five hits and three runs (all earned).
The RedHawks will play the second game of their three-game series against the Sioux Falls Pheasants on Saturday night. Game time is 7:02 pm. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by calling 701-235-6161, online at www.fmredhawks.com, or at the Ticket Office during business hours.
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