Walnut holds off Portsmouth 11-9 in IWL opener
PORTSMOUTH (May 31) -- Portsmouth rallied for six runs in the bottom of the eighth but left the bases loaded in a scoreless ninth inning on Sunday, falling to Walnut 11-9 in the Iowa Western League opener for both sides.
Portsmouth trailed 11-2 at the seventh-inning stretch before mounting a comeback, but left the bases loaded in both the eighth and the ninth. The six-run eighth ended with a circus catch in short left field by Walnut shortstop Jackson Nelson. The game ended on a called third strike.
Hard-throwing Walnut right-hander Tyler Jacobsen pitched six strong innings for the win after battling some early command issues. He allowed three hits and two earned runs while striking out 13. Nick Dufoe earned the save, pitching the final three innings and allowing seven runs - many of them unearned.
With a gusty wind blowing straight out to center, Walnut hit four home runs on the day. Kaleb Harrison had two of the homers, including a moon shot well over the trees beyond the right field fence. Dufoe and Nelson both homered once and Jacobsen added a double. Those four batters combined for nine of Walnut’s 13 total hits.
Eric Croghan homered to left for Portsmouth, Ben Bruck hit a pair of singles and Dillon Sears roped a double into the right field corner. Logan Klaassen, the first of several Portsmouth pitchers used on the mound, took the loss.
Walnut 11, Portsmouth 9
R H E
Walnut 050 202 200 -- 11 13 x
Portsmouth 100 010 160 -- 9 9 x
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