It is the begining of a new series and the Mid-Missouri Mavericks are hoping to come out on top. But with a 12-4 loss in the series opener at Taylor Stadium last night against the River City Rascals, the Mavericks seem to have their work cut out for them.
Things started out fine in the first inning with the Mavericks' Blake Blase scoring first, but the Rascals' Brody Jackson quickly answered in the top of the second.
In the top of the third Zack Riera hit a pop fly to center field, sending Mikela Olsen home on a sacrifice. Three batters later Chris Klosterman scored and the Mavericks ended with a double play. In the same inning Derrick Peoples was walked by Rascals pitcher Greg Modica. Peoples stole second and later third on a missed catch by the Rascals catcher. The next batter, Nick Saunders, hit a two-run homerun over the right field fence to tie the game.
The Rascals dominated the fourth inning, scoring six runs including a two-run scoring pop fly to right field by Olsen and a homerun by Riera.
The fourth inning saw the first of three pitching changes for the Mavericks. Starter Michael Almand was replaced by Dan Moellering. Luis Reyes took over in the eighth and Justin Craker pitched the ninth inning.
From then on neither the Mavericks nor Rascals scored until the eighth inning. Josh Ury, of the Rascals, took a base after being hit by Reyes and scored three batters later on a sacrifice by Riera. Klosterman hit a double and scored when Jackson also hit a double. For the Mavericks, Peoples hit a single, later made it to second, got to third on a wild pitch and was batted in by Saunders. Rafael Ornelas scored the last run of the game in the top of the ninth for the Rascals.
Despite the loss, the Mavericks' Jason Elkins said they still feel confident and are "still gelling as a team".