Pike Peaks in RedHawks 5-2 Victory
Tyler Peak allowed one unearned run in five innings as the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks moved to within four games of first place with a 5-2 victory over the Milwaukee Milkmen on Friday evening. The RedHawks hit four homers, including the 13th of the season by MVP candidate Drew Ward. Christian Ibarra also homered and drove in two for Fargo-Moorhead.
After a scoreless first inning, the RedHawks took the lead in the top of the second. Leobaldo Pina hit a grounder that he beat out for a base hit. That brought Ibarra to the plate, who stayed alive by fouling off three pitches to work the count full before blasting his third homerun of the season. The two-run shot gave Fargo-Moorhead a 2-0 lead.
An inning later, the lead became three. Ward led off and turned on a 1-0 pitch by Ryan Kussmaul, ripping it over the wall in left-center.
Solo homers helped Fargo-Moorhead to extend their lead to five. In the fourth, Forrestt Allday hit a two-out blast, his seventh of the year. Two innings later, Alex Boxwell delivered a two-out homer of his own, his second of the season.
That was more than enough support for Pike (3-5) on this day. The right-hander was brilliant but found himself in some trouble from the start. In the first inning, Pike gave up back-to-back singles to start the frame, then walked Jose Sermo with one down to load the bases. However, he buckled down, striking out David Washington before getting Mason Davis to fly out to strand all three Milkmen runners.
Pike allowed just two hits over the next six frames, retiring 22 of the 25 batters. He looked like he would keep Milwaukee off the scoreboard, but an error allowed the Milkmen to get on the board. In the bottom of the eighth, Brett Vertigan singled to start the inning, then moved to third on consecutive ground outs.
After the first ground out, Pike came out, tossing 114 pitches. He allowed five hits and two walks while striking out eight.
Bret Helton came on and, after recording a ground out, Sermo hit a ground ball to third, but Pina misplayed the grounder for an error. That allowed Vertigan to score. A base hit by Washington plated Sermo to pull Milwaukee within three, but they would get no closer.
Tyler Wilson came on in the ninth and retired the side in order for his first save of the season.
Ibarra finished 3-4 with a run scored and two RBI. Boxwell had two hits. Vertigan had two hits for the Milkmen.
By Robert Pannier