By: Brandon Vickrey
Aurora, Ill. – Aug. 4, 2020 – The Northwest Indiana Oilmen experienced something they hadn’t all season long on Tuesday – a second straight setback.
The team fell 5-3 to host DuPage County at Aurora Central Catholic High School in Aurora, Ill., rallying for three in the seventh to tie the game before permitting the decisive runs in the bottom of the eighth.
Hounds starter Seth Masters may have received no decision, but he bamboozled Oilmen hitters to the tune of two runs (both scored after he left the game) on one hit and two walks over six strong innings.
“We’ve seen Masters multiple times, at some point we’ve got to try to get to him, but we don’t really have quality at-bats against him,” Oilmen manager Chris Cunningham said. “We had a lot of early swings and not a lot of barrel. We’re not swinging the bats very well right now, so we’ve got to find a way to get better.”
Oilmen starter Joe Rotkis (Morehead State / Granger, Ind.) gave up a first-inning tally, and the 1-0 score stood until the sixth. He kept his team in the game, working six frames while yielding three runs on four hits and striking out five.
“I thought Joe threw the baseball well,” Cunningham said. “He kept the ball down and threw a lot of strikes. He loves throwing against wood bats; he pounds the zone with strikes. He has a quality changeup and a good breaking ball; he does a nice job for us.”
Matt Litwicki (Indiana / Dyer, Ind.) allowed two runs on three hits in the bottom of the eighth and took the loss in his Oilmen debut. Jack Wolfe (1-0) was the winner in relief, while JohnLuca Moschetto nailed down his fourth save by striking out the side in the ninth.
Tre Hondras (Michigan / Flossmoor, Ill.) had a two-run, game-tying single in the top of the seventh on a day where the Oilmen were limited to three hits.
The Oilmen (18-9) will look to bring their first skid of the season to a quick halt on Wednesday as they take on the Joliet Generals at 3 p.m. at Howie Minas Field in Midlothian, Ill. The game will be broadcast on the Oilmen Broadcasting Network with Brandon Vickrey and Alex Coil on the call.
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