The Pippins couldn’t dig themselves out of an early hole as they dropped their fourth straight game in a 7-3 loss to the Sweets on Saturday.
Mason Wells was coming off one of his best starts of the season, going seven plus innings of three run ball against the Black Bears, but the Sweets were able to get to him early.
With two outs and a runner at second in the first inning, Jordan Hovey checked in with an RBI single to put the Sweets on the board.
In the second, the Sweets sent eight men to the plate, driving in three runs. With two outs, Patrick Caulfield, Cesar Lopez and Nick Nyquist hit back to back to back RBI singles to extend the lead to 4-0.
Offensively, the Pippins had a couple two out opportunities early. With two outs and the bases empty in the first, Kyle Dean ripped a triple off the center field wall but he would be stranded. In the second inning, Chris Arpan worked his way to third after a one out single but would also be stranded.
The Pippins got on the board in the third inning on an RBI groundout off the bat of Cody Jefferis. Runners would be stranded on the corners to end the inning.
After a scoreless third by Wells the Pippins would go to the bullpen, marking just the second time that Wells has gone less than four innings in a regular start all season.
Drew Hurst came out of the bullpen in the sixth for the Pippins and kept the Sweets scoreless over three frames, not allowing a hit.
Hurst’s performance was not enough as the Pippins offense was stymied by starter Tyson Quolas and a combination of four relievers. Quolas struck out seven over five frames and the Sweets combined to strike out twelve Pippins batters.
In the seventh, the Pippins mounted their last rally, scoring two runs on a Jake Moberg RBI single and a wild pitch. That was all the Pippins could muster the rest of the way as they were shut out in the final two innings.
The Pippins have dropped the first two games of this series and have now lost four straight games. They will look to avoid the sweep and get back in the win column in the final game of the series on Sunday. First pitch at 7:05.