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Mercado’s Blast Spoils Kansas City Comeback

06/05/2009 9:37 PM -

The Kansas City T-Bones (9-9) tied the game with a three runs in their half of the ninth inning, but Richard Mercado hit a two-run, walk-off home run to give the Schaumburg Flyers (12-6) their eighth straight win, 7-5.

The Flyers jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning against Ryan Knippschild with four consecutive two-out singles.  Jeff Dunbar and Jose Valdez each collected RBI with their basehits.

Brad Correll (pictured) answered for Kansas City with one out in the second, hitting a solo home run off Dustin Glant to pull the T-Bones within one.

Both starters settled down after the early offensive output, holding their opposition scoreless until the sixth inning.  Following Valdez’s single in the first, Knippschild retired 10 straight and 13 of his next 14 batters.  Glant retired 11 of his next 12 after Correll’s blast.

Kansas City loaded the bases with a single, hit batter and an intentional walk before Correll drew a free pass to tie the game at two in the top of the sixth.  The Flyers responded with three runs in their half of the frame, the first on a solo shot from Vince Harrison to begin the inning.  Following a single, a double and a walk with one out, Jason Colson capped off the inning with a two-run single, chasing Knippschild from the game.

Knippschild surrendered five runs on eight hits in his five and one-thirds innings.  He would not factor into the decision.  Cody McAllister relieved the left-hander and induced a bases-loaded double play to end the sixth.  He threw two more perfect frames before giving way to Payton Tweddale (0-1) in the ninth.

Glant left after seven innings having allowed two runs while scattering five hits.  After a scoreless frame from Kris Jiggits, Cephas Howard (1-0) entered to finish the game for Schaumburg.

Mark Minicozzi walked to begin the ninth for Kansas City and advanced to third on a double by Ryan Fox.  The next batter, Eric Scriven, tripled off Howard to pull the T-Bones within one.  Scriven later scored on a passed ball by Mercado to tie the game at five.

Tweddale struck out the first two batters in the bottom of the ninth before surrendering a single to Julius Thames.  Mercado then hit his third home run of the season to end the scoring at 7-5.  Tweddale suffered the loss while Howard took the victory.

Dustin Bolton looks to snap Kansas City’s four-game losing streak against the Flyers tomorrow night at 6:05.  Schaumburg has yet to name their starter for the contest.